Monday, October 27, 2014

The Sleuk Rith Institute: Zaha Hadid's Soft Hymn to Genocide in Cambodia

The institute library exterior and reflecting pool
CAMBODIA---Looking like a futuristic descendant of Angkor Wat, with a cluster of chiselled forms poking up above the trees, Cambodia is to receive a new genocide museum and research institute, designed by London-based Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid. Unveiled 35 years after the end of the Khmer Rouge’s brutal reign, the Sleuk Rith Institute will incorporate a museum, research centre, graduate school, document archives and research library, set in an expansive new park south of the centre of the capital, Phnom Penh. The project is the vision of human-rights activist Youk Chhang, 53, who has directed the Documentation Centre of Cambodia (DC-Cam) since 1995. He amassed a vast archive detailing the atrocities of the regime led by Pol Pot from 1975 to 1979, when two million Cambodians were slaughtered. [link]

The view out of the foyer