Weekend for the arts: 'Nightwalking' exhibition, Mah Meri tales book launch


A close-up of an artwork titled 'Zaila' by Hasanul Isyraf Idris. It is featured in his new exhibition 'Nightwalking' at the Rissim Contemporary gallery in Kuala Lumpur. Photo: Handout

EXHIBITION: HASANUL ISYRAF IDRIS - NIGHTWALKING

Venue: Rissim Contemporary, Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur

Date: July 15 to Aug 6

Penang-based contemporary artist Hasanul Isyraf Idris is making a welcome return with a new solo exhibition titled Nightwalking at Rissim Contemporary, a boutique art space in Kuala Lumpur.

Hasanul’s exhibition - Rissim in collaboration with Richard Koh Fine Art - features a series of new paintings of moths against backgrounds of the celestial night sky. During the pandemic, Hasanul maintained a daily routine of going out at night on walks around his home in the suburbs of George Town and also began rearing insects in his garden.

The wildlife of Penang has been a frequent subject in his recent works, including a series of birds (Conference Of The Birds) painted in 2021. But as subjects, they are not painted as mere observational studies; rather, their behaviours and habits are suffused with symbolic resonance. In the paintings of Nightwalking, the transient, self-destructive nature of moths and the brilliant, melancholic blue of night time come together to visualise the ecstatic cycle of life, death, and regeneration.

Nightwalking is Hasanul’s ninth solo exhibition, following past solo exhibitions in Richard Koh Fine Art and The Back Room. He has participated in numerous group exhibitions in the region and also at VOLTA Basel and New York.

More info here.

'Mah Meri Animal Folklore' is a bilingual (English and Malay) compilation of stories from the Mah Meri community. Photo: Gerimis Art Project'Mah Meri Animal Folklore' is a bilingual (English and Malay) compilation of stories from the Mah Meri community. Photo: Gerimis Art Project

BOOK LAUNCH: MAH MERI ANIMAL FOLKLORE

Venue: Centre for Malaysian Indigenous Studies (CMIS), Kuala Lumpur

Date: July 16, noon to 4pm

The Centre for Malaysian Indigenous Studies (CMIS) is always a wonderful space to explore the latest creative developments (and more) happening in the Orang Asli community and this Sunday, the launch of the Mah Meri Animal Folklore book is bound to be a family-oriented affair with sharing and storytelling sessions scheduled as some of the event’s highlights.

The book, published by Gerimis Art Project in April, is ready for an event-filled launch, with loads of activities, food and pop-up craft stalls to accompany the event at CMIS.

This Sunday, you can learn more about the making of this book as well as sit in for a storytelling session (register here) with Julida Uju (more affectionately known as Kak Julida), a Mah Meri weaver and dancer from Kampung Sungai Bumbun, Pulau Carey, Selangor. She is part of the Tompoq Topoh group, led by Kak Maznah, a family troupe of weavers, dancers, and wood carvers.

Mah Meri Animal Folklore is a collection of seven tales as told by Julida. The tales are filled with entertaining animal characters and are a glimpse into how the Mah Meri perceive their environment. The making of this book is supported by Tourism Selangor’s 2022 Pitching Competition.

If you can’t make it this Sunday, Julida will also be presenting a storytelling and book-signing session at the newly-opened Sunda Shelves bookshop in Petaling Jaya this Saturday, with the event starting at 4pm. Register here.

More info here.

'Luna' draws on ancient Bunun chants, which is recognised as a Cultural Heritage in Taiwan, along with the rituals associated with mountain life, including the Bunun tribe's exploit-boasting act at the end of a hunt. Photo: Hideto Maezawa'Luna' draws on ancient Bunun chants, which is recognised as a Cultural Heritage in Taiwan, along with the rituals associated with mountain life, including the Bunun tribe's exploit-boasting act at the end of a hunt. Photo: Hideto Maezawa

PERFORMING ARTS: LUNA

Venue: KLPac, Kuala Lumpur

Date: July 14-16

Time to take that journey of self-discovery through nature, traditions and dance with Taiwan's Bulareyaung Dance Company’s award-winning performance Luna, which makes its South-East Asian premiere at KLPac.

Shrouded in mist, at an altitude of 1,000 meters, lies Luluna village – home to the Bunun indigenous tribe of Taiwan. Known as fierce warriors, the Bunun are also known for something else – their singing.

During his travels, choreographer Bulareyaung Pagarlava stumbled upon a group of Bunun singing under a street lamp. A week later, unable to get their voices out of his mind, he headed back into the mountains with his dancers to learn ancient Bunun chants (recognised as a Cultural Heritage in Taiwan) from the Luluna Bunun Choir, mountain life and how to survive there.

Armed with the elders’ blessings and their wish: “I hope you can take our songs and share them to more people ... share the most beautiful voices of Taiwan”, Bulareyaung Dance Company now transforms theatres into mountainous forests, dancers into warriors and invites the theatre masses to reconnect with nature and tradition through its unique dance style fused with Bunun culture.

Luna was originally commissioned by the National Taichung Theatre and choreographed by Bulareyaung. It premiered in Taiwan in 2018.

More info here.

A view of the mini exhibition by veteran artist Lai Loong Sung, featuring oil paintings, Chinese ink works and sketches at Papan Haus in Petaling Jaya. Photo: Papan HausA view of the mini exhibition by veteran artist Lai Loong Sung, featuring oil paintings, Chinese ink works and sketches at Papan Haus in Petaling Jaya. Photo: Papan Haus

LAI LOONG SUNG ART EXHIBITION

Venue: Papan Haus, Petaling Jaya

Date: ends July 16

Papan Haus, an independent arts space and residency in Section 14, Petaling Jaya, is marking its first anniversary this month. Leading off the celebration is an exhibition, curated by the Papan Haus team, showcasing a series of recent oil paintings, Chinese ink works and sketches by veteran artist Lai Loong Sung.

The 79-year old Lai, who is still active on the art-making front, is best known for his black-and-white works that marry the styles and techniques of woodcut, Chinese ink painting, and drawing.

The well-travelled artist, who has exhibited in Italy, Australia and Taiwan, began his career as an art lecturer in the early 1970s, before working for a daily newspaper, a period where his art reflected the realities of everyday life.

In the 1970s, he marked the turbulent decade with several woodcut prints and oil paintings, forming his most extensive series of works exploring the subject of war and conflict of the period. Throughout the years working in media and art, Lai’s subsequent works continued to explore themes of daily life and its accompanying trials and tribulations.

For this rare exhibition from Lai at Papan Haus, visitors are in for a treat with the artist showing large-scale oil paint and Chinese ink works as well as selected sketchbook artworks from his personal archives.

More info here.

Malaysian author and educator Syed Farid Alatas will present a talk titled 'The Role Of Myths In Society' at Eslite Spectrum bookstore in KL on July 15. Photo: The Star/FilepicMalaysian author and educator Syed Farid Alatas will present a talk titled 'The Role Of Myths In Society' at Eslite Spectrum bookstore in KL on July 15. Photo: The Star/Filepic

LITERARY TALK: THE ROLE OF MYTHS IN SOCIETY

Venue: Eslite Spectrum bookstore, Kuala Lumpur

Date: July 15, 3pm

Malaysian author and educator Syed Farid Alatas, a professor of sociology and anthropology at the National University of Singapore and a visiting professor at Universiti Malaya, is set to hold an talk The Role Of Myths In Society at the Eslite Spectrum bookstore in downtown Kuala Lumpur. It is part of the bookshop's Rasa Talks series.

His research interests include the sociology of Islam, social theory, religion and reform, and colonial and Eurocentric knowledge.

Syed has written numerous books and articles, including Ibn Khaldun (Oxford University Press, 2013), Applying Ibn Khaldun: The Recovery Of A Lost Tradition In Sociology (Routledge, 2014) and Sociological Theory Beyond The Canon (Palgrave, 2017, with Vineeta Sinha).

In the sharing of The Role Of Myths In Society, Syed will offer insightful perspectives as he delves into his areas of expertise, including the sociology of Islam, social theory, religion and reform, and intra- and inter-religious dialogue. Registration required.

More info here.

EXHIBITION: KHAIRUDIN ZAINUDIN - CERITA ORANG

Venue: G13 Gallery, Petaling Jaya

Date: ends July 22

Cerita Orang, the latest solo exhibition by contemporary artist Khairudin Zainudin, offers gallery visitors a chance to slow down and take a moment to enjoy art in today's fast-paced world.

His exhibition takes viewers on a thoughtful and quiet journey, delving into the themes of soulful living. Inspired by his Kelantanese roots and influenced by his time living in Selangor, his new mixed media artworks also embody a rich tapestry of experiences, memories, and emotions.

In a world where life seems relentless, Khairudin reflects on an alternative approach through the artworks in Cerita Orang.

In the paintings, the viewers will find a series of stories and portraits. In them, Khairudin narrates the lives of the Kelantanese people who embrace community life, encompassing various aspects such as culture, economy, politics, heritage, and social dynamics. His art invites viewers to contemplate the beauty and simplicity found in the ordinary, encouraging a shift in perspective towards a more mindful existence.

More info here.

Shufitri Shukardi (left) and John Wee (right) feature in a scene from 'Kakureja', a new theatre production from Theatresauce. Photo: Handout Shufitri Shukardi (left) and John Wee (right) feature in a scene from 'Kakureja', a new theatre production from Theatresauce. Photo: Handout

THEATRE: KAKUREGA

Venue: Theatresauce HQ, Subang Jaya

Date: July 19-23

Theatre show Kakureja, directed by Murasaki Haru, is a 60-minute immersive and participative project which explores escapism, introspection, and the pursuit of creative expression.

Through two pieces running simultaneously in an "izakaya" and an art studio, audiences are welcomed to scrutinise four artists simmering in their hideouts, bearing different objectives and inner conflicts.

Food will also be served to the audience, and materials provided to encourage creative expression.

Kakureja brings together seasoned and new collaborators that make up the performance ensemble: Phraveen Arikiah, Shufitri Shukardi, Samuel Tin, and John Wee.

Sans Collective’s Bryan Chang handles scenography, while Abner Goh and Jazzie Lee Jin Jye stage manage. Chisa Tan manages the production.

The show is presented by Theatresauce, while a supplementary project where visual artists express their own hideouts is run by Howls Theatre Co (where Murasaki is the artistic director).

More info here.

Visitors take a look at Tan Sri P. Ramlee's director's chair at the exhibition in Muzium Negara in KL. Photo: BernamaVisitors take a look at Tan Sri P. Ramlee's director's chair at the exhibition in Muzium Negara in KL. Photo: Bernama

EXHIBITION: ‘100 YEARS OF MALAYSIAN CINEMA’

Venue: Muzium Negara, Kuala Lumpur

Date: ends July 20

Muzium Negara's latest exhibition is bound to interest cinemaphiles, history lovers and museum visitors. More than 100 exhibits capturing the country's history of film and cinema are on display at this 100 Years Of Malaysian Cinema exhibition.

They include an Asian Film Festival trophy and a director's chair belonging to Tan Sri P. Ramlee, film production equipment from the 1940s, movie posters from the 1980s to 1990s, a cabinet of vintage film costumes as well as items from the personal collection of the late Datuk Aziz Sattar, the late Datuk Jamil Sulong and actress Datuk Rosnani Jamil.

The exhibition, organised by the Ministry of National Unity through the Department of Museums Malaysia (JMM), is also a rare opportunity for visitors to view an array of loaned exhibit items from the collection of various agencies, including the National Archives of Malaysia, the National Film Development Corporation (Finas), the World Cultural Organisation, SIAR (local streaming services of local films), and individual owners.

More info here.

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Luna , exhibition , art , dance , Mah Meri , book , launch , Muzium Negara , theatre

   

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