| James Kon |
IN ITS first overseas foray, the “Petronas Art Collection” displayed around 30 contemporary works of arts at the Malay Technology Museum, yesterday.
The ongoing exhibition coincided with the launch of the Petronas “Pertumpuan: Senusa Sejiwa” by guest of honour, Datin Paduka Hajah Adina binti Othman, Deputy Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports.
The art which showcase diverse cultural landscapes of the Malay Archipelago is aimed at promoting the convergence of cultures.
The exhibition is showcasing artistic creations by prominent modern and contemporary Malaysian artists and underline the bond of kindred solidarity among the multiracial communities.
One of the artists featured is Awang Damit Ahmad, a Sabahan of Brunei descent highlights his individual styles or symbolic iconographies and concerns.
The exhibition also commemorates Malaysia’s chairmanship of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) this year to raise the profile of Asean and promote solidarity of the people under the theme “ People Centred Asean”.
Pengiran Dr Karim bin Pengiran Haji Osman, Acting Director of the Museums Department in his welcoming remarks said, “The proposal to host the exhibition came up two months ago when a friend notified me of Galeri Petronas’ intention to exhibit its art collection in the country.
“At first, I asked ‘is this real?’ Does Petronas want to exhibit art and not science technology, which is related to oil and gas? Petronas is one of the established oil companies in Malaysia and Asean. The company not only focuses on oil and gas but also in the field of appreciating arts.”
Pengiran Dr Karim reiterated that the Department of Museums welcomes government, private sector, associations or embassies and high commissions in the country to coordinate more exhibitions. Also speaking at the launch was Director of Galeri Petronas, Haji Rosli bin Abdul Rahim. “Good governance of natural landscapes and resources are critical to fostering and maintaining national identity and cultural heritage.
“With the dramatic economic development that has changed our landscapes over the past half century, Petronas recognises the need to protect and cherish the beauty of mothernature that has provided us with natural resources and lush sceneries.
“The landscape artworks by our local talents uncover Malaysia’s dramatic and diverse scenery and allow us to present the strong, traditional and locally distinctive features of our nature to an international audience,” Rosli said.
Meanwhile Associate Curator of Pertumpuan: Senusa Sejiwa, Ratna Siti Akbari explained, “Arts and culture are the bridge that connect us, strengthening the bond and uniting us as one. The culture which stems from communities is shared and cannot be owned by a singular nation.
This is the beauty and function of arts and culture which transcends beyond confinement of nationality and political boundaries.“ The exhibition is open to public, free of charge until March 31.