SUAVEART concentrates on the cultural value between art and life. Presenting the stories and issues related to “island, art and life”. Creating the borderless dialogues that can be found everywhere in our daily life.

Short info of Artist

Kuei-Pi Li was born in Tainan in 1991. She received her MFA from Taipei National University of the Arts in 2017, and currently lives in Taipei.

Her work engages in transnational mobility and labor experience, in which she converts objects created from labor and intervenes in the labor process, transforming the meaning of the products to convey her critical viewpoints about the modern material world.

I will introduce you 3 stories which from my work “Koh Pich’s ABC’s” today. Koh Pich is a Khmer word, it means Diamond Island. It is an island in Phnom Penh which named by Chinese, before it is an island for leper only.

What’s going on in the pest in this island? How is it today, let me show you.

Keyword 1 : Great Migration

Mostly from developing countries, they are composed of international investors, gamblers incited by capitalism, and capitalists who could not transfer their property due to the limitation of domestic law — all of them move around the world to chase after profits.

To curb property speculation resulted from overseas investment, in 2013, the Malaysian government increased the minimum purchase price for foreigners to acquire property in Kuala Lumpur from 500,000RM (Malaysian dollar) to 1,000,000RM. 

As a result, people gradually left Malaysia for Cambodia. While Phnom Penh and Sihanoukville’s housing markets had experienced ups and downs from 2018 to 2019, entering into 2020, due to an oversupply of apartments in Malaysia, the Malaysian government has prepared to lower the threshold for foreign buyers again to 600,000RM. As the world is under the shadow of COVID-19, they are prepared to move again.

Keyword 2 : Victory

I would like to share a suggestion from a Tuk Tuk rental shop owner in Phnom Penh. 

After he read Robert Kiyosaki’s Rich Dad, Poor Dad, published in 1997. 

① First of all, your physical capacity is the best asset. You can collect recyclable materials available for sale from the trash pile or become a temporary worker on a construction site. Keep in mind that you have to save US$1 per day out of your income somewhere you will not want to withdraw money from, for example, a certain corner on the roof. If possible, maybe refrain from alcohol drinking for now.

② Next, you might gain some money. Hold on, don’t rush into buying all those goods that just come across your mind. The rental fee for a traditional tuk-tuk is US$2 per day, and the newer kind of new style tuk-tuk costs US$3 per day. You can also pay a little bit fee to Pass App or Grab, join their tuk-tuk driver’s network, and receive a stable customer base. Otherwise, you can also go on the streets and solicit customers by yourself. 

If you want to become part of Pass App or Grab App’s tuk-tuk driver’s network, you will need to buy a smartphone (OPPO is a good choice) and a SIM card first. It doesn’t need to be something expensive, just the ones that will allow you to connect to the App all the time. If you want to find business on the street, the standard pricing for a 3-hour trip in Phnom Penh is around US$10-15, this income is more than enough for the rental fee of a tuk-tuk for an entire day. However, most people who buy the travel service are foreign tourists. If possible, they prefer more; you better learn a little bit of English or Chinese.

③ Now that your daily income should be around US$15-20, you can start thinking seriously about saving some money. You can consider applying for a bank account to avoid the risk of missing money or being robbed. If you have decided to choose tuk-tuk tourist service as your main income, you can sign up for an English class runing by NGO. They are picky foreigners, so don’t forget to always keep your tuk-tuk clean. If possible, you can even spend some effort on decorating your tuk-tuk. Don’t forget to use Pass App and Grab App to increase extra revenue as well.

④ You already have some savings as well as a stable income. Never forget, “learning is the only road towards success.” I suppose that you have already mastered the driving of tuk-tuk, so you will need some challenge now. “A car” will be helpful to your next step towards a successful life. Your savings will be useful when you need to pay for the down payment of your car. After owning a car, you can hit the road and charge your customers a higher fee to pay for the monthly loan.

⑤ Lastly, you can resume your habit of drinking. You had repaid your car loan, and on top of that, you also possess a car and bank savings. Now you can consider starting other businesses to increase your income.

Keyword 3 : Yellow

The color that represents wealth in Phnom Penh
Royal Palace. 
Duck egg yolk. 
Ice cream.
Dancer’s dress.
French town. 


Thank you so much!

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