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Local architectural wonder among finalists in Dezeen Awards

Jose Rodriguez T. Senase / Khmer Times Share:
Children play outside the Adventurous Global School, a building that has been shortlisted for the Dezeen Awards. Dezeen Awards

An eye-catching, modernist school building in Battambang province is among the finalists in the 2019 Dezeen Awards.

The annual Dezeen Awards recognizes the world’s best architecture, interiors, and designs and the people behind them.

The Adventurous Global School (AGS), which was designed by Orient Occident Atelier of Hong Kong, was among 53 architecture projects from around the world that made it to the shortlist. The list of finalists was released last week by the awards’ organisers.

Opened two years ago, AGS incorporates a unique and innovative design described in the awards website as “covered in a grid-like structure to create a versatile and flexible learning space”.

“Orient Occident Atelier wanted to engage the teachers and students in the design and reconfiguration of the school in order to create teaching and learning spaces which best suit their interests and curriculum needs,” Dezeen Awards said in its website.

It is believed to be the only school building with such a design in this part of the world. AGS was shortlisted in the ‘small building’ category together with 4 other entries from Mexico, Peru, the United States, and Fiji.

AGS, which is located in Sneung village in Battambang, was built as part of a project to help underprivileged children in rural areas of Cambodia. Its construction was co-funded by Adventurous Global School-Charity in Hong Kong, Vision Du Monde in France and Projectmac in Australia.

The awards attracted 4,500 entries from 87 countries. The list was whittled down to a longlist that contains 267 entries, then to a 53-strong shortlist. Entries are judged based on several key factors like beauty, innovation, and benefit to the people and the world at large.

The Dezeen Awards, which is among the most prestigious accolades in the fields of design and architecture, gives recognition to winners in 36 categories plus three overall winners in architecture, design, and interiors. The Dezeen Awards debuted last year.

In addition to AGS, two other entries from Cambodia – The Factory and Atelier Kampot – made it to the longlist. Both were designed by Bloom Architecture, a Phnom Penh-based boutique architecture company, but could not make it to the shortlist.

Despite that, it was still a good showing for Cambodia and shows that the Kingdom can compete with the best in the world in terms of design and architecture.

In the overall, 53-strong shortlist were iconic architecture projects from the United States Mexico, Peru, Netherlands, Russia, Fiji, and the United Kingdom, among other countries.

A panel composed of 75 leading architects and designers from around the world will decide and announce the final winners in October.

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