Ceritera Kita Exhibition @ Gallery Petronas, Suria KLCC

How long has it been since I last went to Suria KLCC at the Petronas Twin Towers? Long enough to induce feelings of nostalgia haha. I remember swinging by pretty often when I used to wait for my ex to finish college classes… and that was like, what, eight, nine years ago? Since then, I’ve only been back once or twice, as the city centre is far from where I live.

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I was in town recently with some time to kill, so I went to see what was on at Galeri Petronas, which is an art exhibition space owned by Petronas, located within the mall. They are currently having an exhibition called Ceritera Kita (Our Story), which chronicles the story  of Petronas as a company through the years.

Entrance is free.

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Petronas may be known as an oil company, but it is today one of the largest corporations in the world, and has divested interests in various fields, not just Oil and Gas. The first section of the exhibition expands on Petronas’ early days. The demand for oil was so rapid in the 70s – 90s that the company quickly grew to become one of the main pillars of the Malaysian economy.

In 1999, the Petronas Twin Towers, which have come to symbolise modern Malaysia, was officially opened by then (and now lol) Prime Minister, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohammad.

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Wall with some old school photos displayed. High waisted jeans, anyone?

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The Formula 1 Sepang Grand Prix started in 1999 and had its last run in 2017. I don’t think a lot of people watch Formula 1 these days, and if they do, Singapore’s city track is much more exciting. The circuit has become somewhat of a white elephant now.

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Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad. I greatly admire the man. I think smart, visionary leaders like Mahathir only come once in a lifetime. Looking at Malaysia’s current political scene, no one can match up to the charisma and cunning of this 93-year-old.

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As part of their CSR efforts in rural communities, which are usually where Petronas operates, the company gives back through education and scholarships.

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An exhibition space made to look like an oil rig. The film playing on screen was a short documentary on a young female engineer, and her struggles and challenges in a male-dominated industry. There aren’t too many female engineers out there and it’s heartening to see girls follow their dreams and succeed.

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Petronas has its own educational institution – the Universiti Teknologi Petronas in Perak.

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Photo exhibition of the communities that Petronas has worked with over the years. The narrative is that as much as they take from nature, they channel back to conservation and preservation.

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A section dedicated to nominees of the Merdeka Award, which recognises and celebrates the achievements and contributions of individuals to Malaysia within their fields.

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Another screening area, done to look like a Formula One track.

For a free exhibition, it was a good 40 minutes spent. Stop by if you need to take a break from all the shopping while you’re at Suria KLCC! 🙂

GALERI PETRONAS 

341-43, Suria KLCC PETRONAS Twin Towers, Persiaran Petronas, Kuala Lumpur City Centre, 50088 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur

Opening hours: 10AM – 8pm (closed Mondays)

Phone: +603 2051 7770

Travelogue Manila: Philippine Art @ The Metropolitan Museum of Manila, Malate

**Wowowow and why has it been a couple of days since my last post? Well, life happened. lel 

Hey guys! I’m back with another edition of ErisGoesTo Manila ! This time we explore the Metropolitan Museum, located within the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Complex along Roxas Boulevard in Malate. Founded in the 1970s, the building is home to various modern and contemporary visual art pieces by both local and international artists.

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We were there on a weekday so the place was empty. MORE FOR ME 

Photos were only allowed on the ground floor.

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There are currently two ongoing exhibitions on display. The first, FASCINATION WITH FILIPINIANA: THE VARGAS COLLECTION (running until July 27 2018) features works collected by lawyer and diplomat Jorge Vargas, including art, books, coins, memorabilia and stamps gathered before, during and after the Pacific War. Also running concurrently is IN THE WAKE OF WAR AND THE MODERN: MANILA, 1941 TO 1961, which focuses on the relationship between Vargas and the city of Manila, in particular during and after the Japanese period.

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Scenes depicting simple village life

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Pulubing Nagbibilang ng Kanyang Kita (Beggar Counting His Earnings) by Demetrio Diego, pen and ink on paper, undated

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Pabasa (reading of scriptures), by the same artist

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Portrait of Manuel E Roxas by Pedro Coniconde, pen and ink on Bristol Board.

This was one of my favourite pieces. If you zoom into the piece, you’ll see that he made the portrait by overlapping the pen strokes over and over again to form coherent lines and an overall picture. Amazing work! I also liked the juxtaposition of different images in the background.

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Kubo sa tabi ng Puno ng Duhat (Nipa Hut Beside a Duhat Tree) by Jorge Pineda, 1929, oil on canvas depicts a very traditional village scene. The colours were subdued and muted, which is something I noticed with Philippine art from the era; perhaps influenced art deco palettes.

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A poster for the Philippine National Bank, done during the Japanese occupation, urging citizens to exchange their currency at the bank for legal money. This propaganda poster has disturbing parallels to the ones produced in Malaya during the same period; and we all know how that turned out. I think we still have the ‘banana money’ handed down by my grandmother – ie money that was virtually worthless during the war because inflation skyrocketed to crazy heights.

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One of the more vibrant pieces imo: Dragon Procession by Diosdado Lorenzo, oil on wood board, undated – showing a scene from Binondo aka Manila’s Chinatown.

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Pictures were not allowed on the second floor, which houses The Philippine Contemporary: To Scale the Past and the Possible permanent exhibition highlighting modern and contemporary art.

Let’s just say that we enjoyed the first floor better. Some of the pieces were good, but there were also some which made no sense – but I guess that’s what art is? Open to interpretation? 😀

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Entry is PHP100 per pax, which isn’t too expensive imo so if you’re ever in the area and looking to appreciate some Filipino art, the Metropolitan Museum of Manila is a good place to go.

METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF MANILA 

 BSP Complex, Roxas Blvd, Malate, Manila, Metro Manila, Philippines

Opening hours: 10AM – 530PM, closed Sundays

Phone: +63 63 250 5271 

Inspiring Stories @ The Best of You Exhibition 2015

Who, or what inspires you to be the very best that you can be?

A family member, a friend, a hobby, a passion?

This is the question that the people behind the Best of You 2015 exhibition asked Malaysians and Singaporeans. And they have delivered hundreds of brave, touching and inspiring stories, to be shared with everyone from October 28 to Nov 1 at IOI City Mall, Putrajaya. 

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These are stories in writing, photos, art, music, and film, by everyday,ordinary people. Stories by people like you and me. Which is why when I was going through the displays, some really touched my heart and had tears welling up in my eyes.

There was one about how this woman broke free from her traditional Asian boundaries to pursue a career as a scuba diver. As an Asian kid in a traditional household, conforming has always been an issue, and I admired the writer for her courage.

There were many who talked about their parents, and how their sacrifices has made such a difference to the lives of their children, and how their resilience and love has brought out the best in them.

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One of the most touching sections was the one where members of the public got to take polaroid photos and write a short caption to go along with it.

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Art pieces by ‘The Leaf Man’.

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Photographs by Humans of Kuala Lumpur.

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There were art pieces by both amateur and professional artists, expressing their stories through paintings, portraits, carvings.

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So if you’re not doing anything over the weekend, come check out The Best of You 2015 exhibition at IOI City mall, Putrajaya. Find a story that resonates with your own. And be inspired. 🙂