Phnom Penh - Three Cambodian handicraft makers, all from the northeastern Ratanakiri province, have received awards for best design of indigenous handicraft products. The winners were announced during a ceremony on Wednesday, October 5, which marked the closure of the Indigenous Designers of the Year Competition.
The competition showcased indigenous products in three different categories – textile weaving, pottery, and basketry – from 11 groups of producer.
Kamet Viek, an indigenous Kroeung woman from Pouy village, Ratanakiri province, won the top place in textile weaving.
The award for the best basketry product went to Yorn Chieng, an indigenous Tumpuon villager from La Ern Kren village, Kon Mom district, Ratanakiri province.
Nou Na, a villager of ethnic Lao decent from Kompong Cham village, Veunsai district, Ratanakiri province, fetched the award for the best ceramic handicraft.
The winners were declared by a judging panel comprising representatives of the Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts, the Ministry of Commerce, Artisans’ Association of Cambodia and the joint-UN’s Creative Industries Support Programme (CISP). The CISP, supported by the UN-Spain Millennium Development Goals Achievement Fund (MDG-F), works toward preservation of cultural identity of the Cambodian indigenous people while employing trade tools to help them sell handicrafts to improve their livelihoods. The programme is implemented by four UN agencies - UNESCO, ILO, FAO and UNDP.
H.E. Him Chhem, Minister of Culture and Fine Arts, and Douglas Broderick, United Nations Resident Coordinator in Cambodia, presided over the award ceremony, which was held at the National Museum in Phnom Penh.
In his remarks, Mr. Broderick said the award served to recognize and raise awareness of “the unique and vivacious breadth of Cambodia’s indigenous cultures as well as the commercial potential of traditional indigenous products.”
The winners’ handicraft products and those of other competition's contenders are current on display at the Indigenous Handicraft Exhibition, at the National Museum, until 12 November 2011.
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