50 years captured through a lens

Daniel Lim

A talk on preserving the culture and history of Borneo through photographs was hosted by the Panaga Photographic Society (PPS) at the Panaga Club in Belait District yesterday.

The talk was conducted by Professor of Borneo Studies Victor King, who is with the Institute of Asian Studies, Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD). King showcased 50 years of experiences he had of living in Borneo and the photos he had taken over the years, held up against the changes over time.

“I am mostly talking about my research here in Borneo, specifically in Brunei,”  he said.

“It is structured around my change of interest in the region and how my career developed from researching into preservation of culture and history through photographs.”

He hoped that showing these photos would inspire PPS members to take more photos, especially with the resurgence of film photography.

Professor of Borneo Studies Victor King discusses the photographs he had taken over the years in Brunei. PHOTO: DANIEL LIM

Honorary Chairperson of PPS Nicoline Alma noted that the society is celebrating it’s 65th anniversary this year; and that in addition to the talks, the society is also planning on highlighting the various milestones in creating special calendars to commemorate the occasion.

“We are encouraging members to look into the regions and what we can photograph in Brunei instead of outside, especially during the global lockdown; and we are very interested in the documentary aspect,” she said.

Nicoline said that the preservation of the current lifestyle for future generations to come is important. No matter how mundane the current times are, it will be looked back on with nostalgic and significant memories in the future, she said. “There’s a wealth of knowledge that we can tap into film photography, as now in a digital age where everything is moving so fast; film forces us to slow down to think and appreciate, and many young people are now starting to become interested in the process of taking and developing film,”
said Nicoline.

She hoped to support those endeavours, especially in the younger generations who might be new to film photography.