Sleuk Rith Institute, a new institution and genocide memorial

Sleuk Rith InstituteImage courtesy of Zaha Hadid Architects

Sleuk Rith Institute, a new institution and genocide memorial

The Sleuk Rith Institute, a new institution and genocide memorial in the Cambodian capital Phnom Penh, brings together a museum, research centre, graduate school, document archives and research library. The vision of Youk Chhang, a human rights activist and investigator of the Khmer Rouge atrocities, the Sleuk Rith Institute was founded by Chhang as a focus for reflection, healing and reconciliation as well as an enlightening educational and research facility dedicated to commemorating the lives of the past by building a better future.

Sleuk Rith InstituteImage courtesy of Zaha Hadid Architects

Housing the Documentation Centre of Cambodia’s one million documents in its archives and, as the largest collection of genocide related material in Southeast Asia, will become a global centre for education and research into the documentation, causes and prevention of genocide. Despite the tragic history explored at the institute, Youk Chhang’s research led to the very considered brief for a building that promoted reflection and reconciliation, and also inspired and innovated. “Cambodia will never escape its history, but it does not need to be enslaved by it. Post-conflict societies have to move on,” he says.

Sleuk Rith InstituteImage courtesy of Zaha Hadid Architects

“Our hope is that the Sleuk Rith Institute and its Memorial Park can have a truly transformative effect, bringing new life and a bright future to a site that holds traces of the great tragedies of the past. An inviting place where reflection, interaction and connectivity are not only its spatial expression, but also embedded within its covenant to the people of Cambodia,” says Zaha Hadid.

more. www.zaha-hadid.com

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