The history of visual arts in Cambodia goes back centuries, traditional Cambodian arts and crafts include textiles, weaving, silversmithing, stone carving, textiles, lacquerware, ceramics and murals. Beginning in the mid-20th century, a tradition of modern art began in Cambodia, although in the later both traditional and modern arts declined in the the Khmer Rouge regime. The country is now experiencing an artistic revival due to increased direct foreign investment, support from governments, NGOs, and tourist demand.
Silver brass and bronze smithing in Cambodia dates back centuries with workshops, and silversmiths remaining concentrated near the former royal capital Oudong. Silver was made into a variety of items, including weaponry, coins, ceremonial objects used in funerary and religious rituals. Silverworks are often adorned with fruit,fire, and Angkor-inspired motifs. Men produce most of the forms for such work, but women often complete the intricate filigreepatterns. Today with modern machiany more women can start to enter and find employment in this sector.
Silk weaving in Cambodia dates to as early as the first century with textiles being traded during Angkorian times. There are two main types of Cambodian weaving, the ikat technique which produces patterned fabric, to create patterns, weavers tie and dye portions of weft yarn before weaving begins. common motifs include lattice, stars, and spots. The second weaving technique, unique to Cambodia, is called "uneven twill". It yields single or two-color fabrics, which are produced by weaving three threads so that the "color of one thread dominates one side of the fabric, while the two others determine the colour on the reverse side.
Traditionally, Cambodian textiles have employed natural dyes, red dye comes from lac insect nests, blue dye from indigo, yellow and green dye from prohut bark, and black dye from ebony bark.
Cotton textiles have also played a significant role in Cambodian culture, raditionally woven cotton remains popular. Rural women often weave homemade cotton fabric, and the krama, the traditional checkered scarves worn almost universally by Cambodians.