www.malaysianidentity.com    .    Exploration of Malaysian Design + Culture + Products

nurul

Site Admin Posts: 88 Joined: 20 Sep 2006 Location: Melbourne, Australia

Post subject: Malaysian Art Histories

Posted: Thu Nov 09, 2006 12:00 pm

I decided to put in this as a new topic because one of my friend Sarena who is doing her research in Malaysian Art, mention that she can't find any topic related to her area. So here it is Sarena, go a head...I started for you..hope you will continue this..we all can learn from each other... I dont know much about Malaysian Art histories, would be very interesting to know..about this..
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erina_e_jamal

Posts: 9 Joined: 02 Nov 2006 Location: Sydney

Post subject: How does Msian culture and identity reflected in the arts?

Posted: Tue Nov 14, 2006 11:02 am

I guess that is the main issue we can link from the project of this website to the arts.

My interests in this website lies with the fact that it tries to address the issue of Msian culture and identity be it via branding, design, etc. One way of seeing it is through the contemporary undertanding or the general perception of Malaysian culture and identity but there is another way to address this issue, that is by addressing the historical development that makes and influence who we are today within or across the nation boundary.

My thesis lies within the fact of how the National Economic Policy and the National Cultural Policy affects how we live (in terms of our perception of each other especially across racial lines) and how these affects our artistic product especially the fine arts.

Well, this is just a headstart. Maybe someone can shoot me! LOL

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nurul

Site Admin Posts: 88 Joined: 20 Sep 2006 Location: Melbourne, Australia

Post subject:

Posted: Tue Nov 14, 2006 3:01 pm

Your thesis is very interesting Sarena, similar but different to mine. That will be very interesting to look at. Did you look into identity in your research? I came accross a paper called Batik-reassering an identity which is very interesting.
This paper discuss about the history of Batik in Malaysia and how this enfluences the Malaysian Batik or Fine Arts Artist in creating Malaysian Identity through their artwork. It also mention few work of Malaysian famous fine arts and Batik artists like Chuah Teng Teng, Khalil Ibrahim, Fatimah Chick, Mastura Abdul Rahman, Tay Mo Leong, Redza Piyadasa, Najib Ahmad Dawa, Shia Yin Yin, Hasnul Jamal Saidon, Joseph Tan and few others.

On of the artwork that really interest and bring back my memories about 'kampung' lifestyle is an artwork from Mastura Abdul Rahman called 'House of Flower, House of Harmony' 1999. I'll see if i can put the image in here.
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erina_e_jamal

Posts: 9 Joined: 02 Nov 2006 Location: Sydney

Post subject: The paper detail?

Posted: Wed Nov 15, 2006 10:25 am

Maybe I can i have the detail of the paper? I would be something that I should look at. Very Happy

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nurul

Site Admin Posts: 88 Joined: 20 Sep 2006 Location: Melbourne, Australia

Post subject:

Posted: Fri Nov 17, 2006 3:45 pm

I have it only in hard copy, someone give it to me. What do you think about the idea of presenting Batik as one of Malaysian Identity?
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erina_e_jamal

Posts: 9 Joined: 02 Nov 2006 Location: Sydney

Post subject:

Posted: Sat Nov 18, 2006 2:40 am

The question is why Batik? Why not Songket? Wood carvings? etc?etc?
We are talkng about Malaysian identity not Malay(sian) identity. It must be a thing or a product (if its about product!) that reflect Malaysians and agreed by all Malaysians. That means we need to address a new contemporary identity perimeters agreed by all. This is because the failure of Malaysian Cultural Policy is because it was not agreed upon by everybody in the first place.

Anyway, an entire nations's identity should not an never be based on just one product (personally i think Batik is too cliche and seasonal LOL) but perhaps your design problem should be solved from drawing the abstract notion of Malaysian identity firtly, if there is a unifying one in the first place! And justifying batik should be made within this realm.

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mingalababya

Posts: 7 Joined: 06 Nov 2006 Location: Melbourne, Australia

Post subject:

Posted: Sat Nov 18, 2006 4:46 pm

nurul wrote:
I have it only in hard copy, someone give it to me. What do you think about the idea of presenting Batik as one of Malaysian Identity?


Nurul, if we can use Malaysia Airlines as an example, well, they've always used the kite (is it called 'wau'?) as their emblem right from their inception in 1972. They've now stylised the 'wau' with their current livery but the concept is still there. The wau is a symbol of traditional Malaysian flight to represent the national airline's emblem.

As for the flight attendants' uniforms, I believe the stewardesses are wearing a batik design, symbolising something that's traditional for the region. Singapore Airlines has also done the same .. their uniform's design has not changed from the days when SIA and MAS were the one airline known as MSA and before that, Malayan Airways.

So, batik is used in identifying the national airline as "Malaysian" .. I'm sure there are many other examples as well. Smile

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nurul

Site Admin Posts: 88 Joined: 20 Sep 2006 Location: Melbourne, Australia

Post subject:

Posted: Tue Nov 21, 2006 3:38 pm

Qoute from Erina
Quote:
The question is why Batik? Why not Songket? Wood carvings? etc?etc?
We are talkng about Malaysian identity not Malay(sian) identity. It must be a thing or a product (if its about product!) that reflect Malaysians and agreed by all Malaysians.

Why is it important to express our identity? Is identity how we see ourselves or how others see us? Bro Ming wrote about Malaysian Airlines (MAS) using Batik, wau and other traditional products to project the image of Malaysia to others. Although Batik is not Malaysian but because we also share and pratice the tradition, we adopted the culture of batik as our own. I also have Malaysian (non-Malay) friend who adopted the Malay culture and tradition as their own.They loves batik and wears kebaya to work. Baba and Nyonya also wears Batik and Kebaya as their own dress. And now when we sees the chinese who wears the Kebaya and Batik sarung we sort of think that we might be from Baba and Nyonya family roots. I think the National Cultural Policy (NCP,1971) has lots of influences in this process. This is part of the process to establish a national culture. And also as part of building the nation. One of the three principles in NCP is : The National Culture must be based on the indegenous culture of this region. So what Bro Ming wrote is the image that the goverment try to project to others by using the traditional elements or product as part of their promotion.
Quote:
As for the flight attendants' uniforms, I believe the stewardesses are wearing a batik design, symbolising something that's traditional for the region. Singapore Airlines has also done the same .. their uniform's design has not changed from the days when SIA and MAS were the one airline known as MSA and before that, Malayan Airways.

Does the nation itself have the same culture as what the goverment try to project? For example the Australian tourism is using the image of Abroginal people to promote Australia, but so we actually see any abroginal around in the city? Shocked
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mingalababya

Posts: 7 Joined: 06 Nov 2006 Location: Melbourne, Australia

Post subject:

Posted: Wed Nov 22, 2006 12:52 pm

nurul wrote:
Does the nation itself have the same culture as what the goverment try to project? For example the Australian tourism is using the image of Abroginal people to promote Australia, but so we actually see any abroginal around in the city? Shocked


I guess the Aussie tourism authority is trying to sell Australian indigenous culture as a unique experience for foreigners (and for many locals too hehehe..). Qantas, our national airline has two of its aircraft painted in traditional aboriginal art work as you can see here;

http://www1.airliners.net/open.file/1101580/M/

Yet, as you can imagine, aboriginal culture is not practiced predominantly by the majority of the population, but it does "sell".

BTW, many airlines have one or two of their aircraft painted in thematic colour schemes. Malaysia Airlines has used their national flower, the Hibiscus, for this;

http://www1.airliners.net/open.file/1124435/M/


very nice .. Very Happy

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erina_e_jamal

Posts: 9 Joined: 02 Nov 2006 Location: Sydney

Post subject:

Posted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 12:46 pm

i like Ming's point on the Aussie gov and the aboriginal identity. That is the problem i think about design and its marketing strategies.

The more urbanite Malays have kept their batik sarongs away. Women wear more pants than ever, they dont even know how to tie their kain batik like me LOL. Or even understand the designs and the aesthetic meaning. Nobody "berkemban" anymore. Batik has become to be more seasonal. I remember the last season (b4 the late's PM's wife endorsement of batik) was its promulgation by a company called Batik Malaysia. Every souvenir stuffs from fans to cushions uses batik print or batik lukis on them. I saw it in the Handikraft Museum somewhere in front of the main Railway station in KL.

Eventually, with all its marketing and promotional strategies batik became something which only the rich can afford (like Batik sutera) and museumified. I am just highlighting these issues as I feel we really need to find a contemporary meaning to justify batik KWIM??

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nurul

Site Admin Posts: 88 Joined: 20 Sep 2006 Location: Melbourne, Australia

Post subject:

Posted: Mon Nov 27, 2006 2:56 pm

You like 'bunga raya' bro Ming? Interesting link and thought.
Quote:
Yet, as you can imagine, aboriginal culture is not practiced predominantly by the majority of the population, but it does "sell".

This is what worries me, why are we projecting the 'artificial' image to others, if we don't practise it in our culture, just because it can 'sell'?
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