Processing the City
Experience the Malaysian City through the works of artists and urban designers
Exhibition Opening: Friday 22 June, at 8pm
at The Gallery, Top Floor, The Annexe, Central Market
Curator: Adela Askandar
Participants: artists Abdul Multhalib Musa, Chuah Chong Yong, Nadiah Bamadhaj, Richard Lau, young architect collaboratives Building Bloc and Coda, architects and designers Farah Azizan, Adela Askandar, Wan Marlina Rahman and Zaini Zainul, landscape architect Ng Sek San, and photographer John Lambrichts.
Exhibition dates: Fri 22 June - Sun 8 July, 2007
Viewing: 11am - 7pm daily
Enquiries: The Annexe: 03 2274 6542, VWFA: 03-22842348
Valentine Willie Fine Art together with The Annexe, Central Market will be holding an exhibition combining the creative energy of artists and architects, observing the urban fabric of the Malaysian City today.
Much has been written about architecture, which really should be communicated visually. The 50th anniversary of our country's independence is an occasion to re-visit and celebrate our interpretation of the urban fabric that has contributed to the collective consciousness of the Malaysian today.
This exhibition presents a range of approaches that hopes to provide a platform to cultivate dialogue on today's urbanity. Aiming to communicate architectural ideas and issues visually, this group of diverse artists and urban designers offer viewers insights into the concept and experience of the Malaysian city via their thoughts and observations in paintings, sculptures, digital images, found-object installations to mobile viewing cages and t-shirts.
Participants are artists Abdul Multhalib Musa, Chuah Chong Yong, Nadiah Bamadhaj, Richard Lau, young architect-collaboratives Building Bloc and Coda, architects and designers Farah Azizan, Adela Askandar, Wan Marlina Rahman and Zaini Zainul, landscape architect Ng Sek San, and photographer John Lambrichts.
Amir Muhammad will be curating a series of film screenings: Tayangi Kuala Lumpur: Films about the City ( Fri 29 Jun - Sun 1 July, 8pm).
The artists and architects involved promise an exciting presentation, as it encapsulates energy that comes from diverse backgrounds. These collaborators have been both participants and observers of our developing nation.
Abdul Multhalib Musa (born in 1976, Penang) obtained his BA in architecture from MARA University of Technology, Malaysia following which he completed his degree in design studies at the University of Adelaide, South Australia. Multhalib's grounding in architecture can be seen in the way his sculptures are designed and procured to achieve results that demonstrate clarity and complexity. His works have evolved such that it appears to aim for crafted perfection each time. He constantly strives to achieve a compromise between his artistic vision and his architectural sensibilities - an understanding of ingenuity with the rules of construction. Multhalib uses wood and metal in his sculptures - these materials allow the shape of his work to have crisp edges, yet at the same time the nature of wood and metal contribute to the character and mood of each piece. Whilst Multhalib is clear about his sculpture as a form of his imagination, his art is a deliberate and conscious endeavour to involve, it 'is indeed offered with the intention of being read while addressing the reader with a multitude of interpretations, and to personally sustain the intellectual animation of the design process.'
Adela Askandar (born 1974, Penang) obtained an MA in architecture at Cambridge University UK, worked in London for 2 years and obtained the RIBA professional qualification in 2002 before returning to her homeland to practice. In Kuala Lumpur, she worked at Unit One design Sdn Bhd between 2003 and 2005, maintaining an interest in observing the nature of design and practice in the country. She also tutored part-time for an interior design course at a private design college. She currently does freelance work that spans design consultations, contributions for Off the Edge both artistic and not, interiors and unobtrusive architectural work. Always fascinated by cultural and socio-political influences on local creative output, this is the first time she will be curating an exhibition of this cross-disciplinary nature.
Building Bloc is a simple, small, passionate, energetic practice based in Kuala Lumpur. The practice is about testing ideas, re-inventing and breaking the rules of convention. Building Bloc loves getting its hands dirty in the process of transforming its ideas into reality and enjoys exploring new possibilities of materials, construction and local habits of builders. Building Bloc believes in a dynamic collaboration. For this exhibition, Building Bloc is BC ANG in association with WEN HSIA.
Born in 1972, Chuah Chong Yong graduated in Fine Arts at the Malaysian Institute of Arts (MIA) in 1993. He has participated in numerous exhibitions locally and his works have earned accolades such as the Young Contemporaries Award (1994) and the Philip Morris Malaysian Art Awards (1996). Chuah has also exhibited abroad at the 1st International Ghost & Spiritual Festival (1999) in Berlin, Germany, and the 2nd Fukuoka Triennale at the Fukuoka Asian Art Museum (2002) in Fukuoka, Japan. Besides painting, he has cultivated parallel interests in theatre, performance and installation art. Chuah's reputation as one of the moving forces of his generation is swiftly burgeoning. He is one of the founding members of Rumah Air Panas, an artists' collective studio in Setapak. In 2006, the artist was honoured by the Ministry of Culture, Arts and Heritage with the Anugerah Bakat Muda Seni Tampak for the Visual Arts.
CODA was established at the beginning of 2005 as a collaborative office between 5 designers in pursuit of the idea of architecture and urbanism of reflexivity. Members comprise of Jamil Hamid, Yusrizan Yusof, Wan Azhar Sulaiman, Jamsyid Idrus and Hafiz Ismail. CODA has since become a platform for continuous discourse in propagating alternative ideas through architectural proposal and construction, teaching, research as well as virtual and printed publications. CODA's design approach focuses on site specificity, responding to the contextual milieu with regard to the culture of the local indigenous, economics and the wisdoms to create a visionary built environment.
Farah Azizan (born 1978, Kuala Lumpur) obtained her BA in architecture at Nottigham University, UK and after working with GDP architects between 2000 and 2001, pursued her diploma in architecture (RIBA part II) at the Architectural Association, London. Her past work revolve around investigating relationships between existing urban ecologies in the setting of a marginalised post-industrial landscape as an active element of design.
Upon graduating in 2004, she freelanced with Tonkin Liu architects and Birds of Britain, London after which she reluctantly returned to KL and joined Seksan Design. She has not looked back since.
John Lambrichts, born in the The Netherlands in 1954 is the only artist born before our independence. A self-taught photographer, he has been a member of GKf- photographers Association since 2000 (The Netherlands, Amsterdam) and has won awards that include the Zilveren Camera first and third prize in the documentary photography series category with Walton City (The Netherlands, 1999); the VVAA Jubilee award with the photo documentary The Elderly and Cancer (The Netherlands, 1999) and the Euro Comenius medal (Germany, Berlin 2001). John spent some time in Brickfields, one of the oldest and most traditional districts of Kuala Lumpur in 2006. An ultramodern Central Station opened in Brickfields, turning this suburb into the heart of the Malaysian capital. With a new subway system and the high speed KLIA Express to the international airport, Brickfields is now linked with the rest of the city and the world. The consequence of this is beautifully captured through John's photography.
Nadiah Bamadhaj was born in Petaling Jaya, Selangor Malaysia in 1968. After obtaining a BFA in Sculpture and Sociology from the University of Canterbury, New Zealand, she went on to work with non-governmental organizations on HIV/AIDS prevention and human rights advocacy. In 2002, she was awarded the Nippon Foundation's Asian Public Intellectuals Fellowship. Her work attempts to uncover processes by which collective memories are lost or obscured, only to be replaced with new ones. She questions who places them there, and how these come to be naturalized. She has used video, drawing, installation, sculpture and photography, always underpinning her fine aesthetic sensibilities with intellectual rigour and in-depth research. She recently took part in Building Conversations and Home Productions at Singapore Art Museum, Re-thinking Nordic Colonialism, A Post-Colonial Exhibition Project in Five Acts, Act 3: Torshavn, The Faroe Islands, CP Biennale II in Jakarta and Home Works III, Forum on Cultural Practices at the Lebanese Association for Plastic Arts, Beirut. Her recent work looks at architecture as historical documents and carriers of memory, which is the topic of her phD research that begins at Curtin University of Technology in 2006.
Ng Sek San pursued landscape architecture and obtained the postgraduate diploma in the subject at Lincoln University, New Zealand in 1985. One of the leading landscape architects in Malaysia today, Sek San's palette of work demonstrates a breadth of approach that spans from minimal interventions onto the natural landscape to that which is rich in elements yet contemporary in spirit. The practice often explores place-making, generating installations both within natural and man-made surroundings. Collaborative work with other designers and craftsmen have given birth to structures that always attempts to challenge typical manners of touching nature and constructing on it, lending some reverence to the land. Much of his installations as well as his landscape works are inspired by visual arts, as opposed to succumbing to a horticultural approach to landscape design. The 'subversive' nature of his practice allows Sek San to balance commercial reality with some artistic play.
Wan Marlina Rahman was born in Trengganu in 1976. She gained her diploma in architecture UiTM 1997. Furthered her studies at Oxford Brookes Univeristy, UK and obtained her diploma in Architecture(RIBA Part II) in 2000. During her work 2000 to 2003 as an architectural assistant at GDP architects, she began to explore graphic design, and her interest was cemented in the formation of her own graphics design bureau, Graphic's Arm Sdn Bhd in 2003. There, she produced artwork for both corporate and private clients and began developing an interest in incorporating graphics in a more integral manner with the building fabric, looking at 'branding' of interiors in a more holistic manner. Now, after three years of graphics, she is moving back to exploring interiors.
Born in Kuala Lumpur in 1961 into a creative environment, Richard Lau grew up surrounded by artists and art in one form or another. Richard decided to escape this environment and pursue a course in humanities in England only to discover much later, that his real interest was in art. Upon returning to KL, Richard worked a set-builder, prop-maker & designer and has also worked as an art director for film, tv and theatre (Anna & the King and Spinning Gasing among others). His interest in art was revived when he came across raw art (art Brute) whilst abroad which resonated with his own interest in working with found objects and recycling materials.
For further information, please contact the curator, Adela Askandar: 012 210 9228
Processing the City - Press Release as pdf-File 24,6 KB