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The World Monuments Fund unveils four statues, locally produced and designed as a result of research, and hopes to see them installed on the roof of Angkor Wat’s East Gallery, after approval from public consultation.

Phnom Penh Post, 20120611

Phnom Penh Post, 20120611

A monumental undertaking in Angkor Wat
Phnom Penh Post, 11 June 2012

New Cambodia Art Planned for an Old Empire
VOA, 11 June 2012

With that in mind, the New York-based WMF has pulled out all the stops for the production of four statues, the first of their type in perhaps 800 years, which will adorn the roof top of the East Gallery, home to the Sea of the Churning Milk – a bas relief of battling gods and demons symbolising immortality.

Each carving stands little more than 30 centimetres tall, each with an apsara – a traditional Khmer symbol – at the centre surrounded by a lotus, and each with its own personality.

“This would have been unthinkable 20 years ago,” Ackerman said. “To have this done 20 years ago would have risked accusations of trying to falsify what this was like all those centuries ago.”

Nineteen fragments were collected from the statues that originally sat atop the gallery. Scientists determined the original stone contained a high clay content, making it heavy when wet. Fresh grey-blue sandstone was dug from nearby Bangmealea, a quarry similar to those used in Angkorian times.

Full story here.

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