Silence Remained
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Cambodia is one of the countries in the world with the most tremendous changes within the last 40 years. The once highly advanced country and center of the Khmer Empire, was hit by the evil civil war and the genocide in the 1970s and came into Vietnamese occupation in the 1980s. Then in the early 1990s the United Nations got the authority to supervise the politics and conflicts in Cambodia. From this time on the country has been shifting to modernism. Today Cambodia is a parliamentary representative democracy with a rapidly developing economy.

Yoko Toda contrasts these changes in an installation of her photographs from the mid 1960s and a video of the modern city life of 2008. The 3-piece installation emphasizes the contrast of modernism and tradition, noise and silence, movement and slowness.



Photographs from Yoko Toda are now part of the collection of the National Museum in Phnom Penh. The Museum contains the most amazing artifacts of Cambodian history especially of Khmer and the Angkor era and is complemented by more recent examples of photographs of the country. The photographs are now among the best and largest collection of Khmer art and culture.

One of them has a special historical significance as it shows a very important sculpture of Angkor Wat which has been disappeared for a long time. Recently the head of the sculpture has been discovered in Germany and will now be returned to the National Museum. Yoko Toda’s photograph, taken in 1965, can help to find the still missing body of the sculpture as it is maybe the 
best-shaped image which is known.

Ministry of Culture and Art



The photographs are now part of the collection of the Audiovisual Resource Center in Pnom Penh Cambodia.The mission of the Audiovisual Resource Center is to collect the images and sounds of the Cambodian memory and make them available to a wide audience. Bophana Audiovisual Resource Center:


Future Projects:

Yoko Toda's next aim is to project the smiling Buddha-Face on central buildings of western metropolis.

The Buddha shows the peaceful, spiritual and cultural past of the Khmer Empire with its capital, Angkor Wat. The temple of Angkor, which goes back to Greek influence, stands for the cultural and religious diversity.

The Buddha's silent and spiritual beauty contrasts the stressful public space of a modern city and stands for an example of the precious heritage of human cultures. Therefore the Buddha symbolizes the peace on earth and is an hopeful sign for the freedom between different cultures.






Silence-Remained 2005-2011