Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Colonial postcards

A postcard of Angkor Wat from the early part of the 20th century
Collecting postcards isn't everyone's cup of tea but there are some fantastic examples out there which show Cambodian scenes in the first half of the 20th century - temples, countryside, town views, palace scenes, monks, servants, transport and so on - and I'm kicking myself I didn't start collecting them from day 1. One man who has is Joel Montague and he's currently arranging his collection and researching other postcards for a forthcoming book to be published later this year, or early next year by White Lotus Press. It'll be called Cambodian Colonial Postcards and will include up to 900 views from the time they began to appear, in 1902, up til the 2nd World War. It's certainly a book that I'll be keen to acquire. Joel is not just into collecting postcards either. He's recently held an exhibition of Cambodian Business Signs, 25 of which he has hung in a gallery in the United States town of Wellesley. Shop signage in Cambodia has often appeared quirky and comedic to western visitors and Joel decided to take that back to the States for public consumption on a recent visit back home. Read the story here.
Servants from the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh in the early part of the 20th century



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