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Vann Molyvann, Architect Who Shaped Cambodia’s Capital, Dies at 90


My dream of visiting Cambodia was realized last summer on an amazing trip I went on with Jeffrey. The most eye opening experience I had was on a tour of “New Khmer Architecture” led by an Architectural student. He introduced me to the modernist Architect Vann Molyvann who after studying in France with Le Corbusier and other modernist greats developed a new modern, dynamic style, merging traditional Khmer architecture with modernist architecture.

I took a lot of photos excited to share them with Julia, who was also amazed by the beauty of Molyvann’s work, but also by the striking visual connections to other well know modernist architects. We hope you enjoy seeing some examples of this unsung modern master and help keep his name and work alive!

Ellen and Julia

Please check out the links below and the very short, phenomenal documentary about the little know genius, Vann Molyann.

"The Man Who Built Cambodia” - a narrative documentary exploring the life of Vann Molyvann.

Example of traditional Khmer building.

Kampong Phulk Floating Village, Siem Reap, Cambodia, 2017.

Vann Molyvann Marriage of traditional Khmer architecture with modern architecture through the use of modernist interpretation of stilts.

Institute for Foreign Languages, Phnom Penh, Cambodia, 1965-1971.

Le Corbusier Structure appears to be floating on pillars.

Villa Savoye, Poissy, France, 1929-1931.

Vann Molyvann Precast, reinforced concrete used to create repetitive, functional, patterning.

Institute for Foreign Languages, Phnom Penh, Cambodia, 1965-1971.

Oscar Niemeyer Precast, reinforced concrete used to create repetitive, functional patterning

Brasilia Cathedral, Brasilia, Brazil, 1959-1970.

Vann Molyvann Complex Brutalist design using precast concrete incorporating water as a visual and functional climate based element.

The National Sports Complex in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, 1963 -1964.

Le Corbusier Complex Brutalist design using precast concrete incorporating water as a visual and functional climate based element. Palace of Assembly, Chandigarh India, 1950’s.

Vann Molyvann

Cantilevered viewing box. The National Sports Complex, Phnom Penh, Cambodia, 1963-1964.

Le Corbusier Cantilevered Bell Tower.

Monastery Sainte-Marie- de-la- Tourette, Eveux, France, 1957-1960.

Vann Molyvann Cantilevered, Scissor Stairway. Institute for Foreign Languages, Phnom Penh, Cambodia, 1965-1971.

Philip Johnson and Richard Foster Cantilevered, Scissor Stairway.

Elmer Holmes Bobst Library, New York University, Manhattan, USA, 1972.

The New York Times, Obituary. Vann Molyvann, Architect Who Shaped Cambodia’s Capital, Dies at 90.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/28/obituaries/vann-molyvann-dead-architect-who-shaped-phnom-penh.html

CNN Style,

Why these extraordinary Cambodian buildings need to be saved.

http://www.cnn.com/style/article/new-khmer-architecture/index.html


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