Conversation: Discussing Spectacles

A conversation between Syar and Liy on the conversation between artist Sharon Chin and curator Sze on 20 February 2016. Their conversation: “(Goh) Sze (Ying) interviews Sharon (Chin) about taking part in APT8 (8th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art). This is a sharing and dialogue session in the form of an interview between Sze and…

A Jewish monk, a Christian sage, & the first Muslim wife

Currently reading a history of women in early Islam called Unveiling The Ideal, by Shayan Afzal Khan. It’s a great read, although my friend Nine mentioned how bored she was of the “unveiling” trope to title anything to do with Islam and women (is it the only trope we got?). The preface alone discusses how…

The Unbearable Lightness Of Cities

or, “The cats are restless tonight”.  Cities get brutally lonely. That’s the thing though, I’m not sure what people expect from cities. I know we flock to them after seeing them on TV and hearing stories from friends living in them. From the outside looking in— tourist ads, TV, film, bright lights, skyscraper boners and…

A meltdown and a triptych and back by Malaysia Day

Once upon a time, I wrote a fair bit. I read what I wrote onstage: bits of head and heart on paper that fluttered in shivers when held up to a mic. Flyers around town had my name on it even though I wasn’t in a band. And then I was in a band— in…

Projek Serambi (3/3) — Dari Kampala Ke Kuala Lumpur

If we imagined universities as a microcosm of society, what could we say about Malaysia based on our campuses? If we used how we interact with each other in classrooms instead of grades as our mirrors, how would that reflect upon us? This is the final part of a three-parter story.   Clare’s story is…

Projek Serambi (2/3) — Summertime

Clare traded in the dancing, parties and music of her childhood for the life of a foreign student: four years long, seven thousand kilometers away. It was also awfully quiet. Then, she found her voice. This is the second part of the story.    Clare is celebrating the end of a seven-hour Immigration debacle with a…

Projek Serambi (1/3) — Not Dead Prez

A portrait of a girl who is certainly not Dead Prez, a wonderful playlist of soukous music, and 24 year olds who don’t really care about fitting in. The first of three parts.    Clare and I are the same age, born ten days apart. She has been living-slash-studying in Kuala Lumpur for the past…

An Interview On Death

Sometime in January before her Berlinale adventures, Nadira stayed over. Our bedtime activities: singing old patriotic songs, pathetic plastic-fishing, talking death. She bought me offerings of cat chocolate and an Elmo balloon. The former disappeared too fast (much to my horror) and the latter still has yet to deflate (also horror). Two big memories from…