Vietnam and Cambodia: After The Ravages of War

November 8, 2019 // Filed under Blog

November Exhibition & Talk at Bernardsville Library

Bernardsville Public Library is pleased to present “Vietnam and Cambodia: After the Ravages of War,” an exhibition of photographs by Douglas Munch, during the month of November. The show will be on view from November 2 to November 27. On Wednesday, November 13 at 7:00 pm, Dr. Munch will discuss the show and his experiences in Vietnam during his trip there in 2018.

The show will display images of modern day Vietnam and Cambodia that Dr. Munch made in January 2018 during his tour from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City (also known as Saigon). The photographs show aspects of modern life in these ancient countries that have been plagued and ravaged by war. After more than a century of occupation and war, Vietnam is a resilient and youthful country. There are many vestiges of the storied past and a great deal of evidence about the growing economy. In Cambodia, Angkor Wat is a region of strong religious influence. Its ancient complex of temples dominates the region and, as a UNESCO World Heritage site, it is one of three great Buddhist sites in the Eastern World.

In Dr. Munch’s talk on November 13, he will review the historical background of French involvement in Vietnam, the Geneva Agreements, the division of the country into North and South regions, and U.S. involvement. Then he will discuss several aspects of the Vietnam War and focus on modern Vietnam—its beauty, tradition, people and economy—as he saw it in 2018. Vietnam is a growing and youthful country that seems to have great potential.

Dr. Munch has been fascinated by the medium of photography since he won his first “open” competition at the age of 12 in Tokyo, Japan. “Photography can be an artistic pursuit that can grab you at almost any time in your life and last a lifetime,” he says, “I was captivated by this medium early. Back then, I used a twin lens reflex camera and black and white film. Over the years, photographic equipment has gone through a dramatic evolution, but the art of seeing the light, framing the subject, and capturing the moment remains mostly unchanged. For me, photography is still a creative artistic outlet and serious avocation. My enjoyment of photography encompasses many types of fine art imagery from nature, wildlife and landscape, to townscapes of cities and villages and environmental portraits.”

Dr. Munch has presented numerous solo photographic exhibitions over the past 8 years, and often lectures on them addressing culture, religion, history, politics and/or language that add insight to his photography for the viewing community. He has won or placed in many photo contests. Once an aerospace engineer, he then earned his doctorate in Medicine and Biomedical Engineering from The Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, and worked in cardiovascular research, pharmaceutical and medical device development, and senior management in the health care industry. He lives with his wife in Morristown, New Jersey.

The show is open during regular library hours, unless a meeting is in progress. There is no charge to attend the lecture; advance registration is requested at or call the library at 908-766-0118 to sign up.

1-Hoi An; Vietnam. A woman rows her small craft across the river.
2-Angkor Wat; Cambodia. One of several Cambodian dancers entertaining tourists within the famous temple grounds at Angkor Wat.

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