Liew Kian Yap
Langkawi Art Biennale
by EVENT MANAGER
30th July 2013
Langkawi Art Biennale is organising two outdoor events, firstly is an interactive installation of scarecrows on a paddy field; a show of migration/movement from suburb paddy farmers to urban professionals. The second outdoor event is called 'gotong-royong angkat rumah', another show of migration/movement of living and working in unity...
15th Jun 2013
I have started sending out Invitation Letter to many artists around the world. I'm excited over this great "migration". I can feel the movement of artists from their countries of origin to Langkawi will carry along languages, food, lifestyle, values and beliefs, which constitutes as a large concept of culture that will transfer along into this island. The artists are here on an art quest as they begin to roam around the island to find resources, to seek comfort and most of all to seek inspiration to this new chapter of life. Migration is certainly the theme for Langkawi Art Biennale 2014.
Langkawi island is surrounded by the sea, a large body of water that is formless yet bringing life to every single living organism. This island is a sanctuary that houses various forms of flora and fauna live harmoniously in the midst of a treasure chest that carries a large array of precious stones.
The wind blows from unknown directions, sweeping through the island, giving a sense of serenity to the inhabitants and bringing seasons to the peaceful island. However, in the midst of the dry and hot season, the fiery feeling fuels up energy to bring new life despite the potential to destroy.
As the island’s natural elements coexist with each other, the migrated artists are bound to adjust to their new environment within a certain period of time. Being the new inhabitant in this mystical island, one will discover about the tragic legend of Mahsuri that has become synonymous with Langkawi.
One of the many folkfore that surround Langkawi; is the legend about the maiden Mahsuri who has became a cultural icon of the island. Mahsuri was a maiden who was wrongly accused of adultery. For that she was sentenced to death. When Mahsuri's body was pierced, a fountain of white blood issued forth. Those who witnessed the execution took this as indisputable proof of Mahsuri's innocence. With her last breath, she cursed the island of Langkawi to be riddled with bad luck for seven generations and only after the seven generations have passed would the curse on Langkawi Island be lifted.
The artists are absorbing their newfound discovery of the legendary story while immersing in the past and present of this island. In just 10 momentous days of the workshop, artists could freely craft their works of art by combining their reflections from the past experiences of their homelands with the new knowledge that lives within this island. This art biennale could pave an exhibit that shows the best of both worlds; the artists’ masterpieces that demonstrate a combination of different cultures in one.
Upon the artists' preparation to return, they would leave behind their significant works of art as an exchange in which the artists will return to their homelands with an unforgettable discovery of Langkawi, their newfound fellow artists friends, legendary story of Mahsuri, hospitality of the locals, and the luxury of Langkawi Natural. Thus, all my artists friends are my "art tourism ambassadors". By word of mouth, holiday makers and art enthusiasts will want to come for holiday in Langkawi with a desire to enjoy the arty masterpieces that will be displayed at many participating hotels and art galleries.
Migration is beautiful, and the influence of culture is inevitable. Langkawi will surely be designated a harborer of contemporary art tourism. It’s all happening in Langkawi Art Biennale 2014.
31st May 2013
In these recent years, I have been travelling extensively around Asia. I am greatly impressed by the art activities that are held within this region. In my observation on these arty activities, they have evoked my passion to bring such similar event to Langkawi.
My yearning for such event has ignited the idea in me to organise an art biennale. I shared this idea with artists around the world and they are my correlated supporters to make this event possible. Thus, it sparked a great migration of artists to Langkawi. The convergence of artists in Langkawi then forms the Langkawi AIR (artist-in-residence). While dwelling in Langkawi, a natural island, this destination will serve its purpose for artists to express their creativity during the workshop.