Successful Thai-Malaysian Women artist exhibition opening before Penang Floods
Thai-Malaysian Women artist exhibition
Mr. Tai’s 80th birthday party,breakfasts with fresh coconut milk and the last chats over breaking open longan fruits made farewells to the artists from China, Russia, Indonesia, Malaysia, India and Thailand in the Maritime Silk Road International art exhibition.
Moving to stay in an apartment overlooking Gurney Bay, so named after the 1951 British High Commissioner, a new day began when I was greeted by the morning sun.
This was where I was to stay with lovely Malaysian women artists whilst being invited to participate in the Thai and Malaysian women artists for their 9th exhibition inter-country collaboration organised by Malaysian woman artist Teoh Siew Choo.
Having just moved from a lovely artist house this was quite another experience. On a high level, floor to ceiling windows opened out on to balconies that gave a breath-taking vista of busy Gurney Drive, with a very welcome breeze. It was an honour and a pleasure to meet fellow women artists and exhibit in their Journey of Unity exhibition at Galeri Seni Mutiara in the Heritage part of Georgetown, Penang. The gallery was next door to the Mor Hun Club, the Teowchew Puppet and Opera House, another one of the preserved low rise buildings with original tiled floors, interior air wells opening up to a higher level allowing air to flood into the humid space. Great excitement was in the air as Malaysian and Thai artists are now old friends, sharing no common language apart from good humour and painted expressions.
Dato Abdul Halim Bin Hussein, Director of Invest Penang, arrived to open the exhibition to applauds from women artists lining both sides of the gallery led by Thai woman artist Porntip Thongpong. Meanwhile Thai artist Phatchareeboon Urnglaphan painted a Thai dancer on the spot. It was also very nice to see many notable male artists come to support the show such as: Eric Quay, Cheong Pooi Yip, Peter Liew, Heng Eew and Chong Hon Fatt.
I was very pleased that the Tai family came to also visit the exhibition. Noodles, egg curry and various other delicacies made for an exhibition opening afternoon tea with the colourful Nyonya Kuih, almost jelly type cakes made from coconut milk with pandan leaf filling. The gallery was abuzz with conversation intermittently refreshed by overhead fans reminiscent of colonial times when there was no air-con. As the opening came to a close and with the exhibition due to run until September 30th we all went out to celebrate at a Seafood restaurant. Thankfully in a private room away from the noisy main restaurant full of people celebrating the Night of the Hungry Ghost Festival, we chatted over tasty dishes and then began to make our own noise singing and dancing to Karaoke.
Moving on we were treated to a private viewing of Chong Hon Fatt's Gallery.
Now home I am full of gratitude for such amazing art exhibitions in Penang Island, and also to be safely home just shortly before Penang suffered such awful flooding.