FONKi is an artist from Montreal. He was born in France of Cambodian parents, who were refugees of the Khmer Rouge genocide, in the 70s.

At 15 years old, FONKi discovers graffiti. He gradually grows into one of the most prominent figures in Montreal’s new generation of graffiti artists.His art becomes his oyster – as it brings FONKi around the world. He paints murals in France, Cambodia, Belgium, England, Mexico, Vietnam, the United States… Everywhere he goes, he paints giant portraits depicting local people. These anonymous faces communicate deeply touching expressions and have become FONKi’s signature.

His artistic process and inspiration take a critical turn in the summer of 2012. FONKi is the main character of a feature documentary entitled “The Roots Remain”, filming his return to his ancestors’ land. In Cambodia, he discovers a country at the crossroads, bubbling with changes at all levels of the society. He leaves his mark creating the very first “kbach” style graffiti lettering, a mix between modernity and traditional Cambodian art, which can be found on the hundreds-of-year old frescoes of the fabulous Angkor temples. Since he gained recognition as one of the pioneers of Kbach style graffiti, FONKI has been invited to share his experience in multiple conferences and interviews, including at TEDx and on France Télévision.

Upon his return to Montreal in 2012, he teams up with BONAR, a local artist, to co-found the consortium of artists Montreal ZOO (MTL ZOO). As the curator of art exhibitions through MTL ZOO, they support many artists – some already renown in the Montreal scene and other young artists rising through the ranks – to showcase their creativity in a range of artistic disciplines.

From the walls to the canvas, FONKi managed to adapt his art from the street to galleries. He is the guest of prestigious exhibitions, including by Christie’s, the famous arts auction house. Nowadays, collectors from Europe, North America and Asia own some of his work.
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CURRICULUM

EXHIBITIONS

  • 2015    GRAND VERNISSAGE ELECTRIQUE VIP, Curator,Espace  infopresse, Montreal, Canada (18/06)     
  • 2014    CHRISTIE’S charity auction, Group show, Hotel le Royal ,  Phnom Penh, Cambodia
  • 2014    SOFITEL hotel – Recreation,  Group show, Galerie des arts,Phnom Penh, Cambodia
  • 2013    MTL ZOO fête ses 1 ans!Curator, L’Agora Gallery, group show, curator Montreal (01/10)
  • 2013 MTL ZOO at Divan Orange, Curator, Mural Festival, group show curator, Montreal, (06/12)
  • 2013    Expo D. With art collective En Masse,group show, Montreal 23/02 – (03/03)
  • 2012    MTL ZOO: Le lancement, Curator,L’Agora gallery, group show curator,  Montreal (23/10 – 01/11)
  • 2012    FONKi présente: Héros de ton enfance, Solo show, Boutique Panache, Montreal, Canada (x/03)
  • 2011    For a Fonkee World, Solo show, SubV, Montreal, Canada (09/09)
  • 2011    Bring on the FUNK,  Group show, SubV, Montreal, Canada (28/10 – 30/11)
  • 2011    À propos, group show, L’Agora Gallery, group show, Montreal, Canada (24/02)
  • 2010    Regard sur le Chili, Project Coordinator
  • 2009    Quelle horreur! Curator L’Agora gallery, Montreal (x/05)

SELECTED COMMISSIONNED MURALS and LIVE PAINTING

  • 2015     Ubisoft phase2, Interior design mural with A’SHOP, Montréal, Canada (x/10)
  • 2015     PITREM organization, Interior design mural with A’SHOP, Montréal, Canada (x/10)
  • 2015     Expo Québec, Mural on trucks with A’SHOP, Québec Canada (x/08)
  • 2015     Under Pressure International Graffiti convention, UP 20th anniversary, Montréal, Canada (x/08)
  • 2015     Vans Off The Wall Canada, Shoe design at Osheaga festival, Montreal, Canada (01/08 – 03/08)
  • 2015     Vision Mondiale x Festival Mural x FONKi, Live painting, Montreal, Canada (12/06)
  • 2015     Ubisoft phase1, Interior design mural with A’SHOP, Montreal, Canada (25/05 – 29/05)
  • 2015     Ta Kao, Interior design mural,Longueil, Canada (x/04)
  • 2015     40th anniversary commemoration of the victims of the Cambodian genocide, canvas and art director for Khemara Center, Montreal, Canada (28/03)
  • 2015     McGill University faculty of law, Canvas interior design, Montreal, Canada (x/02 – x/03)
  • 2015     Maria Sabina, Mural, Puerto Esondido, Mexique (x/01)
  • 2014     Lokshin private loft, Interior design muralMontreal, Canada (x/11 – x/12)
  • 2014    Ruelles vertes 1-2-3, Murals, Montreal city green alley project, with A’shop, Montreal, Canada
  • 2014     75e anniversaire de la caisse de groupe de l’administration et des services publics Desjardins, Commissionned canvas for Caisse Desjardins bank, Montreal, Canada (x/09)
  • 2014    Festival Art Pression, Mural, Chicoutimi, Canada (x/10)
  • 2014     Amalgam Urban Art Festival, Mural, Sherbrooke, Canada (x/08)
  • 2014    Elementakiza Hip-Hop you don’t stop,Mural on trucks and Art director, Montreal, Canada (20/10)
  • 2014    Under Pressure Fresh Paint International Graffiti convention, Mural Montreal, Canada (09/08)
  • 2014    Festival MURAL, Paint Jam at Le Belmont, Art director, Montreal, Canada (x/07)
  • 2014    Paris City  library hall, Mural, Paris, France (x/07)
  • 2014    Brick Lane mural project, London, England, (23/07)
  • 2014     Quartier Belleville, Mural Paris, France (x/07)
  • 2014     Sangker Art Space ft. FONKi, Mural FONKi world, Battambang, Cambodge (x/04)
  • 2014    Elementary School, Mural, Koh Thom, Cambodia (x/04)
  • 2014     Biêm hoaMia’s Gallery, Ho chi Minh, Vietnam (05/04 – 06/04)
  • 2014     Maison coloniale, FONKi World, Koh Thom, Cambodge (15/04)
  • 2014     Elementary School,mural FONKi World, Koh Thom, Cambodge (11/04)
  • 2014     Old Cinema,Mural FONKi World, Phnom Penh, Cambodge (11/04)
  • 2014     Cambodia Land of Smiles,Murals, FONKi World, Phnom Penh, Cambodge (x/04)
  • 2014     Boeng Kak Lake Kbach1,  Mural FONKi World , Phnom Penh, Cambodge (x/04)
  • 2014     Boeng Kak Lake Kbach1,  Mural FONKi World , Phnom Penh, Cambodge (x/04)
  • 2014     Eco-restort Jasmine Valley, Mural, FONKi world,Kep, Cambodia (04/02)
  • 2014     Ganesh, Mural private client, Phnom Penh, Cambodia. (x/03)
  • 2013    Integral Yoga institute, Montreal, Canada (x/10)
  • 2013    Orientaly Festival, Festival du monde Arabe, Montreal, Canada (x/08)
  • 2013    Elementakiza Hip-Hop you don’t stop, graffiti battle on trucks,Montreal, Canada (21/10)
  • 2013    Festival Art Pression, Mural Chicoutimi, Canada (10/10)
  • 2013    Under Pressure Fresh Paint International Graffiti convention, Mural, Montreal, Canada (10/08)
  • 2013    Festival MURAL,Interior design mural, Balroom bar nightclub, Montreal, Canada (x/07)
  • 2013    MTL ZOO at Divan Orange, Interior design mural, Montreal, Canada (x/07)
  • 2013     Festival des Week-End du monde, Mural at Cambodian festival, Montréal, Canada (16/07)
  • 2013     Princess Bopha Devi, Charity canvas for the Angkoriennne community of Canada,  Montréal (x/04)
  • 2012    Putthisastra UniversityPhnom Penh, Cambodia (03/08 – 05/08)
  • 2012    Koh Rong Island’s School.  Koh Rong, Cambodia (22/07)
  • 2012    Institut français du Cambodge, Phnom Penh, Cambodia (06/07-20/07)
  • 2012    Boulevard 44, Night club, Montreal, Canada (01/04)
  • 2011    Prevention NDG-CDN, City project, Montreal, Canada (01/10-01/11)
  • 2011    Les Anticipateurs, Rap show live painting, Montreal (x/10)
  • 2011    Can You Rock, International Graffiti-Art convention, Montreal, Canada (03/09-04/09)
  • 2011    Under Pressure Fresh Paint, International Graffiti convention, Montreal, Canada (14/08)
  • 2011    Prevention NDG-CDN, City project, Montreal, Canada (09/08)
  • 2011    Formula 1, Commissioned canvas for Formula 1 event at Time Supper Club, Montreal, Canada (09/06 – 11/06)
  • 2011 997, Time Supper Club live performance and commissioned wall, Montreal, Canada
  • 2011    De Paris à Montreal, Mural for Jeremy Rubier’s documentary, Montreal, Canada (x/02)
  • 2010    Urban Art Event, Montreal, Canada (28/08)
  • 2010    Association Club UdeM, Université de Montréal, Canada (20/03-26/03)
  • 2009    Dentist office, Racy Ly, Montreal, Canada  (02/08)
  • 2009    Urban Art Festival, Repentigny, Canada, Canada (25/07)
  • 2007    International School of Montreal, high school yard, Canada (04/05-05/05)
  • 2006    International School of Montreal, Student café interior design, Canada (x/06)

FILM EXPERIENCE

  • FONKi World, by Thomas Szacka-Marier and FONKi, 2015, web-documentary series, 6 episodes. Cambodia-Montreal-Vietnam.
    Co-director  and fixer
  • The Roots Remain, by Jean-Sebastien Francoeur, 2014, documentary, 112min. Cambodia
    Executive producer, fixer and main protagonist
    Screened at: Cambodia Town film festival 2015, DocUtah 2015, Philadelphia International Film Festival 2015, Vancouver Asian Film Festival 2015, Montreal International Documentary film festival 2015, International Film Festival of Cambodia 2015 ** Winner of: Magnus Isaacson Award, Women Inmates award at RIDM**
  • Follow the Tide, by Thomas Szacka-Marier,2013, documentary, 30min. Dakar, Senegal
    Opening credits animation
  • Smile, by FONKi produced by Rithy Panh, 2012, short film animation, 3min. Cambodia. Screened at the World Film Festival of Cambodia 2012

CONFERENCES, WORKSHOPS and MORE

  • MURAL Festival – Guest speaker. FONKi 10 years recap: Art of living vs Living for art.
  • Henri-Bourassa high school. Guest speaker and art workshops. Nov 2014 – april 2015. Nov 2015 – feb 2015
  • TEDx HEC Montréal – Guest speaker.  FONKi: Cambodia new generation – Healing threw art. May 2014
  • KHEMARA Khmer History and Civilization Center – Guest speaker.  May 2014
  • Artist residency at Cambodia Film Commission & Bophana Center.   April – August 2012
  • International School of Montreal – Guest speaker and art workshops.  2011-2012
  • Angkorienne Community of Canada.2000 – as of today
    Dancer, co-organiser, animator, art director (Annual summer Festival, Fundraising Events)
    The organisation aims at promoting the culture of Cambodia in a Canadian framework, in order to support the integration of immigrants and improve the inter-generational understanding.

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See Fonki’s Portfolio

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See Fonki’s Videos