Cambodian Ceremonial.

Conversations in Cambodian filtered throughout the house and onto the large back porch where family elders were still preparing the dishes for this magnificent ceremony. If I closed my eyes and let the aroma of food touch my senses the Cambodian music became that much clearer.

A traditional Cambodian wedding ceremony is not a singular event, but rather a series of rituals and traditions spread throughout a week of feasting and celebration. This wedding was condensed into a single day for the benefit of western culture and those who had traveled great distances to share in the occasion. In the intense heat and humidity, surrounded by exotic offerings of fruit and Hennessy laid out on silver platters between burning candles and incense; I found myself embedded in the ceremony. At that moment I was no longer in my own country but transported into the rich cultural ground of Cambodia itself!

A Catholic wedding and reception dinner had already brought the two families together the day before, images posted here previously from that event were titled Cambodian Traditions in an effort to tie them to this final post from Chris and Chenda’s multicultural east coast celebration!

I approached this type of ceremony with the cultural sensitivity and respect that I would have as a traveller in foreign lands, the result I think are photographs that show the intimacy and wonderful nature of those who opened their lives to my lens for these few days. I am ever grateful to have shared in such an exquisite cultural experience!

Photographs © Jeremy Wade Shockley 2010.

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