A Journey into the Testy World of Colonial Art

By Ooi Kok Chuen

November 2016 PENANG PALETTE
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Zulkifli Yusoff’s Hujan Lembing di Pasir Salak (Raining Spears at Pasir Salak, 2008) based on Swettenham’s Malay Sketches.
Whether welcome or not, colonialism was a profound fact. Its complex reality found expression in art that can be approached with a healthy historical distance today.A makeshift platform next to the replica statue of Sir Stamford Raffles set up on July 22, 2000, at the man’s purported first landing site allowed those who wanted to interact with Singapore’s founder go eyeball to eyeball instead of having to obsequiously look up his crotch.The video and photography from this “Artists Investigating Monuments”...

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Ooi Kok Chuen

is an art-writer and journalist, and the author of MAHSURI: A Legend Reborn (Ooi Peeps Publishing), an adult contemporary fantasy “movel” (a novel conceived as a mock movie) spun from a local legend.