Creating magical worlds of light


On and Off, a ruminative site-specific dance performance by Pexstret Liu inspired by traditional Malaysian dance forms.

AGAINST the darkness of night, a kaleidoscope of effects danced across the facades of Penang’s iconic City Hall and Town Hall buildings in Jalan Padang Kota Lama, George Town.

From fireworks to psychedelic neon, the fascinating displays drew awe among the spectators.

The displays of lights and colours were the result of projection mapping, the art of projecting specially made videos onto surfaces to create the illusion of three-dimensional art.

On the Town Hall facade, a display themed ‘World of Fantasy’ dazzled spectators.

It was produced by local art collective Filamen and powered by Epson Malaysia.

Filamen co-founder Abdul Shakir Abu Samah said the aim was to transport viewers to another dimension using locally inspired content.

A spectator snapping away at a colourful image projected on the City Hall building.
A spectator snapping away at a colourful image projected on the City Hall building.

“We embraced George Town’s heritage charm and Penang’s natural beauty to let younger generations experience and appreciate the historic building in a different way,” he added.

On the City Hall building, the projection mapping was made up of a series of eleven 30-second videos created by Malaysian and foreign finalists who responded to an earlier open call.

Among them was White Bones made up of Benjamin Lam and Cindy Leow. Their segment, ‘Nocturne’ played with neon lights to recreate a retro feel.

Leow said that the building was quite an unusual canvas for their neon work.

Infinity 6 comprising Malaysians Hanif Rashid and Chris Avinash, Indonesians Jaslyn Tjhai and Umar Jindan, as well as German Tatjana Theuer came up with a segment titled ‘Stargaze’.

All students at Taylor’s University, they sought out what was special about Penang.

The sea and its abundant marine life, came to mind.

Performers from MyDance Station Ballet School putting on a number titled ‘The Nocturne’ at the opening ceremony.
Performers from MyDance Station Ballet School putting on a number titled ‘The Nocturne’ at the opening ceremony.

“We tried to imagine what an underwater world of magic and fantasy looks like at night,” Hanif said of their video.

Ady Setyawan and Fadjar Kurnia from Indonesia created ‘Night Carnival Pasar Malam’ which celebrated the local vibrancy and street food.

“We wanted something locals could relate to. We also wanted to show that things can look very different at night,” Ady said.

‘Candy Empire’ showed a sweets factory bringing simple joy to the people.

The concept was created by Goyang Kaki comprising locals Wilmer Lee and Jeremy Yeoh.

Yeoh said, “This is a good opportunity for us. You don’t get to do something like this every day.”

The other successful finalists and titles of their videos were Buala Colombia with ‘The Colours of George Town’, Antaless Visual Design (Italy) with ‘State of Elevation’, Artcontrols (Hungary) with ‘Waterfall’, Aniko Erdos (Hungary) with ‘Spectra Dance’, Jhon Sabbat (Brazil) with ‘The Moon Machine’, Li Cheng (China) with ‘Memory’ and Yocondo Ratio (Mexico) with ‘The Starry Night’.


   

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