This Malaysian art book project injects punk attitude into historical research


A postcard image of an early 1990s underground gig poster for 'Banned In KL' at Voodoo Lounge in KL, designed by punk band Carburetor Dung's bassist Fendi (Effendee Mazlan). Photo: The Ricecooker Archives

It is not often that you come across a book with a name like this: Banned In KL, Astro Boy Rides The Wave To Sky Kingdom On A Grasshopper. It is a mouthful of a title, although it also goes by its alternative name, Malaysia In Fifteen Postcards, which essentially sums up what it is.

This “art book”, written by Ong Kar Jin, digital researcher, Simon Soon, academic researcher, and Lim Sheau Yun, architectural researcher, presents snippets of our country’s history, with images and accompanying text for every decade from the 1880s to present day. It has perforated pages, so each image can be torn out as a postcard.

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