George Town Festival 2021 seeks to revitalise Penang’s art scene with two exciting campaigns called ‘Nine Days Eight Exhibitions’ and ‘Nine Days Eight Shows’.
The first, ‘Nine Days Eight Exhibitions’, is ongoing until this Sunday across seven locales in George Town.
Its free-to-attend shows feature creative works ranging from paintings and drawings to photography and installation art.
They include ‘AR/UTISTIC: Diaries on the Spectrum’ by Frankie Lim, a Penang-based contemporary artist living with autism.
His pieces created before and during the pandemic are exhibited at Ming Fine Art Gallery in Gurney Paragon Mall.
‘Sama-Sama: George Town, A Multicultural Art Journey’ is held at Mini Cube @ Mano Plus.
It is a long-term project by artist Lefty Julian that explores and celebrates the multicultural heritage in Malaysia.
‘Between 01’ at Jetty 35 is a thought-provoking art installation- cum-dance performance by Lay Heong that advocates the culture of upcycling while the ‘Penang at a Glance’ photography exhibition in Gurney Plaza features images by four local shutterbugs.
‘France eMotion’ at 1st Avenue Mall combines photography with digital animation to take viewers on an eye-opening journey of discovery.
‘Thank God It’s Monday’ at The Whiteaways Arcade features a playful selection of works by Red Hong Yi and her artistic team.
Finally, there is ‘Creative Collection’ which promotes local brands and identities as well as the ‘3x3’ group exhibition from an art residency programme – both taking place in Bangunan UAB.
Dates and viewing hours for these exhibitions vary so visit the official website for details.
The second campaign, ‘Nine Days Eight Shows’, will be held from Dec 4 to 12.
There will be something for everyone including a rainforest concert, a cultural and contemporary dance performance, Japanese music and French movies, traditional wayang kulit and stand-up comedy.
The shows are ‘Ibuki Hati: Bamboo Flute, Piano, Strings and Dance’, ‘The Senses’, ‘Kehebatan Hanuman’, ‘Ciné France’, ‘Make Penang Laugh Again!’, ‘Paper Moon: Jazz in the City Purnama’ and ‘Paper Moon: Murakami and Jazz’ as well as ‘All Together Now’.
Visitors can also look forward to other complementary events such as ‘Sound and Screen: Jazz Film Festival’ from Dec 1 to 3 and ‘Music Masterclasses: Jazz and Beyond’ from Dec 8 to 10.
At the launch of the events on Saturday, state tourism development and creative economy committee chairman Yeoh Soon Hin said more in-person events could now be held as vaccination targets are reached and certain restrictions lifted.
“Needless to say, the pandemic has taken a heavy toll on artists and the creative sector.
“So words cannot express how encouraged I am to see the return of festivals and other physical events,” he added.
He also championed Penang as having some of the most talented people in the region who continue to delight the world by telling the state’s unique stories through artistic ventures.
Also at the launch were Komtar assemblyman Teh Lai Heng, Penang Global Tourism CEO Ooi Chok Yan and festival director Jack Wong.
All venues will be implementing SOP for safety reasons.
For detailed information, visit georgetownfestival.com or follow George Town Festival on Facebook and georgetownfestival on Instagram.