Artists put stray cats in the spotlight in the Ican Care campaign


  • Animals
  • Tuesday, 19 Mar 2019

A wall of paintings from the Celcom and National Art Gallery collaborative exhibition last year, which encouraged the public to support animal rescue efforts as part of Celcom's #ICanCareMY campaign. Photo: Handout

Malaysian artists contributed their talents and craft to shed light on an animal that gets all the attention online, but nowhere near enough in real life: stray cats.

Celcom, in collaboration with the National Art Gallery, held an art exhibition at the end of 2018 as part of the Ican Care campaign to encourage the public to care for stray cats. The campaign, an extension of Celcom’s "I Can" campaign, aims to rescue, rehabilitate and, ultimately, rehome stray cats.

Cuteness aside, stray cats don’t have it easy. Every day, they face exposure to diseases, abuse and traffic.

According to curator Phillip Wong, the objective of the Ican Care art exhibition is to show that anyone can show compassion and love towards cats in their own special way.

The featured artists included names such as Sivarajah Natarajan, Chua Suzi, Fiona Loo Suenn Yin, Elaine Wong, Johan Ishak, Sharon Ong, Audrey Lim, Jessie Loke, Janet Lee, Harsyieta, Yung Mujein, Yung Luwenn, Jazper Cheah, Joelyn Cheah, Tieo Mei Xuan, Tieo Mei Jie, Dorothys Wong, Emmanuel Cheun, Chang Hoe Tin, Yuna Ong, Oscar James French, Izzati Shahrin, Haziq Izmi and Abby Zain.

Their pieces were sold at the exhibition, with a portion of the proceeds going to a local charity. Another highlight of the exhibition was artwork produced by artists as young as five. They are now learning with Wong at his Everyone Can Paint art class. But it’s not just the cats Wong wants to highlight.

“I’d like to see more art museums and galleries in Malaysia, especially contemporary art museums.”

“I will continue to bring more exposure to these artists in the art industry as they tell more meaningful stories along the journey,” he said.

If you missed last August’s exhibition, another cat art exhibition is underway during quarter three of this year and this time it will include wild cats.

To find out more about the exhibition and how you can care for stray cats, visit icancare.my. Those interested in Wong’s work can view his art at Phillip Wong Atelier and Gallery@HomeSweetHome or reach pwartseni@gmail.com.


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