Omar Havana

Photographer
    
Evicting Dreams: The Last Days of the White Building
Location: Paris, France
Nationality: Spanish
Biography: Omar Havana, 1975 Granada, Spain. Spanish Freelance Photojournalist. Based in Paris, France. Previously based in Asia. ( Nepal 2014-2015 and Cambodia 2008 - 2014 ; 2015-2017) Omar has worked as a professional photojournalist since 2005, and since... read on

On June 6th, the faces of the residents of the White Building showed the sadness of what were their last days home. During those days, people were rushing to say goodbye to each other, using up every last second in conversations about what it had been like to live in this legendary building for so many years. This was the end; the life of what has probably been the most charismatic building in Phnom Penh came to an end, and with it, the community that has filled this place with magic for so many years.

Designed in 1963, the White Building - the summit of what was the new urban plan of Phnom Penh - will be converted into a 21-story building filled with luxury apartments, parking lots, and commercial areas. The end of the White Building symbolizes what has been in recent years a loss of identity in Phnom Penh, with the destruction of the traditional Khmer and colonial buildings, which has completely transformed the skyline of the city, with most of it yet to some.


Photography: © Omar Havana. All Rights are Reserved

This story was published in BBC and South China Morning Post

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By Omar Havana —

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Endurance

By Omar Havana / Nepal — On April 25th, 2015 a 7.8 magnitude earthquake devastated Nepal, leaving almost 9,000 people dead, 22,000..
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35 years searching for justice in Cambodia

By Omar Havana / Phnom Penh — Close to two million people were killed during the Khmer Rouge regime in Cambodia, a generation lost in a..
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CEMENTery

By Omar Havana / Kampong Trach — Millions of years ago, a cluster of coral reefs stood firm here as the water receded, leaving them..
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The Bucolic Life of a Cambodian Grandmother Accused of Mass Killings

By Omar Havana / Anlong Veng, cambodia — In this dusty mountain hamlet on the Thai border, she is known as Grandma Chaem. The tiny 74-year-old lives..
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They Smashed Banks for Pol Pot. Now They’re Founding Them

By Omar Havana / Malai cambodia — When the Khmer Rouge were ousted in 1979, they retreated to strongholds like Malai on the western fringes..
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Breaking tradition among Nepal's Maithil women

By Omar Havana / Janakpur, Nepal — Like many women in the Maithil community in Nepal, Manjula Thakur found her life severely restricted and..
VISUAL STORY

Bonjour, Paris

By Omar Havana / Paris — "The meaning of the other and love have disappeared from this society. Without money, people do not..
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Trapped: the Dark Side of Cambodia's Beer Gardens

By Omar Havana / Siem Reap — Throughout Cambodia, thousands of women, most of them under the age of 25, work in beer gardens, karaoke..
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When the Earth Shook Nepal

By Omar Havana / Nepal — A 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck Nepal on April 25th, 2015, shaking the already-impoverished nation to its..
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A woman's Cry: The detention of Tep Vanny

By Omar Havana / Phnom Penh — Tep Vanny is Cambodia’s most famous activist and the leader of the women of Boeung Kak Lake, who..
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Devotees of the Ink

By Omar Havana / Nakhom Pathom — Once a year, thousands of people from all over Thailand travel to the Wat Bang Phra temple, located about..
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Inside a Cambodian Slaughterhouse

By Omar Havana / Siem Reap — In a country where the demand for meat is ever-increasing and where pork is generally favored,..
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The Way

By Omar Havana / Greece — More than 100,000 refugees and migrants have arrived in Greece since the beginning of 2016. They cross the..
VISUAL STORY

The Khmer Fighters

By Omar Havana / Siem Reap — Pradal Serey or Kun Khmer -free fighting- is an unarmed martial art from Cambodia. Compared to other forms..
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My Country Is My Family

By Omar Havana / Nepal — Surrounded by stunning forest, Beldangi is an example of how a refugee camp should be. Only one banner and..
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The Angkor Hell

By Omar Havana / Siem Reap — Just a few dozen kilometers away from the world-famous Angkor temples, about 300 people have lived for the..
VISUAL STORY

La Vie En Jaune

By Omar Havana / Paris, — Hundreds of thousands of “Gilet Jaunes” (meaning “Yellow Vest” in French) have..
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