There are various skin types, for example, thin, thick, soft, smooth and rough skins, etc.  Through skin all senses and body parts, such as the soles of the feet on which we walk every day, are stimulated.  Animal leather in the form of shoes can be used to cover the soles.  Moreover, animal skin can be processed into various items such as an image of angels dancing on a white cloth (as in shadow puppets).

All people stand in front of mirrors to see their faces, complexion and appearance several times each day, and they always notice unsatisfactory defects.  They clean their skins with water and lotions.  Whether born with white, black or dark complexions, people make up their skins with colored makeup according to their preferences.  Nowadays, there are numerous contemporary products for facial skin.  All young Cambodian men and women apply cream to their faces to exfoliate the old skin, thus whitening their skin, and this imposes risks to their skin from the environment.

In ancient times, dancers made their faces white with rice powder to dance for the divine figures on the occasion of the New Year, when the gods determine the fate of the new year as they change over.  It is believed that the white face of the dancers, as a symbol of purity, represents the beauty of nature, good use of the land, pure air to breathe and living in prosperity in a world free of pollution.

During the last few years the weather has been changing, so I don’t sleep soundly.  One night I dreamed that big snake came to sleep with me.  I went to a card fortuneteller and I picked up a jack of clubs, and she told me that I had an unfaithful lover and needed to be careful.  A few days later, I saw the the skin shed by a large snake under my house at Boeung Kak Lake.  I then took it and cut it into an image with arms and legs.  Three months later, I dreamed of the same snake again, and this time it looked exactly like the image I had cut and it laid on a tree branch right in my way, making me very fearful.  It had several wounded spots on its skin.  The snake complained that the water in the Boeung Kak Lake was not clean, nor was the air.  Thus, it would leave the lake.  As a result of that dream, I am more concerned about life, the environment, and skin care, which is the beauty of all humans.  The nature of good skin is important, regardless of whether the complexion is white or dark, as long as they can cope with the environment and support their bodies.

about the artist

Seckon Leang