Hisyamuddin Abdullah

March 17, 2016 2016年3月17日

UsopSontorian and Anak-AnakSidek were two popular cartoon series in Malaysia during the 1990s. One of the animators for both of these series was Hisyamuddin Abdullah’s late brother. Watching the work of his brother come alive on screen transformed what was only a childlike infatuation with cartoons into something more. It became an indescribable feeling of pride and satisfaction that eventually altered the way he looked at art as a whole. These events from his childhood led him to where he is now – being widely praised as a talented up-and-coming artist.


Usop Sontorian dan Anak-Anak Sidek merupakan dua siri kartun popular di Malaysia pada tahun 1990an. Salah seorang juruanimasi untuk kedua-dua siri ini ialah abang kepada Hisyamuddin Abdullah. Menyaksikan karya-karya abang beliau menjadi bergerak dan hidup di kaca TV telah mentransformasikan apa yang dahulunya minat seorang kanak-kanak dengan kartun kepada sesuatu yang lebih lagi. Ia menjadi satu perasaan bangga dan puas yang tidak dapat diucapkan dengan kata-kata yang selanjutnya telah mengubah cara beliau melihat dunia seni secara keseluruhannya. Peristiwa-peristiwa daripada zaman kanak-kanak beliau ini membawa kepada kedudukan beliau sekarang – sebagai pelukis baharu berbakat yang mendapat pujian sewajarnya.

Hisyamuddin Abdullah, now based in Kuala Lumpur, describes his own creations as “painting-drawing.” For the majority of his work, he almost exclusively works with charcoal and acrylic. His artwork can be distinguished by their moments of serenity, but at the same time is powerful and filled with tension; these qualities are further emphasized through his choice of color, tones, and composition. He works with a more realistic approach, and the main subject tends to be a person’s exaggerated expressions or movements. At other times, he will instead opt for a more cartoon-like sketch approach to create quirky, but also dramatic, illustrations. Satire, humor, and sarcasm are the foundations of his work. His self-portrait series, which might appear a bit narcissistic at first, is actually rhetoric that conveys his personal beliefs about the current sociopolitical climate of modern-day Malaysia.


Hisyamuddin Abdullah, kini berpangkalan di Kuala Lumpur, memerihalkan ciptaan beliau sendiri sebagai “catan dan lukisan.” Dalam kebanyakan hasil karyanya, beliau hampir-hampir secara eksklusif melukis menggunakan kayu arang dan akrilik. Karya seni beliau dapat dibezakan melalui penerapan saat-saat mendamaikan dalam lukisan beliau, namun pada masa yang sama ia bertenaga dan penuh dengan ketegangan; semua kualiti ini ditekankan lagi melalui pilihan warna, tona dan komposisi beliau. Beliau menerapkan pendekatan realistic, dan subjek utama cenderung kepada ekspresi atau pergerakan seseorang yang dilebih-lebihkan. Pada masa yang lain, beliau sebaliknya akan memilih pendekatan yang lebih kepada lakaran mirip kartun untuk menghasilkan ilustrasi yang aneh namun dramatik. Satira, humor dan sindiran menjadi asas kepada hasil karya beliau. Siri potret diri beliau, yang mungkin kelihatan agak narsisistik pada awalnya, sebenarnya merupakan retorik yang menceritakan kepercayaan peribadi beliau tentang iklim sosio-politik semasa Malaysia dalam dunia moden.

Born in a small village, located on an island off the eastern shores of Malaysia, Hisyamuddin’s art education didn’t officially start until 2008. That was the year where he graduated from the University of Technology with a Diploma in Fine Art before continuing on to obtain a Bachelor’s degree in painting. This was also the time when he was first exposed to the commotion and bustle of life in a big city like Kuala Lumpur. For him, being far away from the familiarity of home and having to navigate around a metropolitan city was emotionally and mentally taxing. He now considers that period of time as an immensely crucial part of his personal creative journey.


Dilahirkan di sebuah kampung kecil yang terletak di sebuah pulau di pantai timur Malaysia, pengajian seni Hisyamuddin tidak bermula secara rasmi sehingga tahun 2008. Pada tahun itulah beliau telah dikalungkan dengan Diploma Seni Halus daripada Universiti Teknologi, sebelum meneruskan usaha untuk mendapatkan pula ijazah sarjana muda dalam lukisan cat. Ini juga merupakan waktu di mana beliau mula didedahkan kepada barisan hadapan kesibukan sebuah bandar raya besar seperti Kuala Lumpur. Berada jauh daripada keselesaan di kampung dan terpaksa pula mengemudi melalui celah-celah bandar raya metropolitan, menjadi bebanan berat ke atas mental dan emosi beliau. Beliau menganggap bahawa tempoh masa tersebut merupakan bahagian yang amat penting dalam perjalanan seni beliau.

Rather than being inspired by a certain space or place, Hisyamuddin finds that his work changes according to the different phases of his life. For example, when he was in school and felt homesick, his work would reflect that sense of longing for home. During that time, his creations focused around family bonding, particularly exploring his relationship with his father. “But now as I begin to live my own life in society, my work tends to have more emphasis on current issues that affects the people of Malaysia at large,” he reveals. His work is based on pop realism, using the figurative as a narrative device to express his ideas. The concepts he prefers to explore tends to revolve around the world around him, from personal experiences to national events. Hisyamuddin believes that an artist’s creativity and the view they try to share with the world will only be meaningful if it’s based on reality.


Daripada dipengaruhi oleh ruang atau tempat tertentu, Hisyamuddin sebaliknya mendapati bahawa karya seni beliau berubah mengikut fasa berbeza dalam hidup beliau. Sebagai contoh, ketika beliau masih belajar dan berasa rindu dengan kampung halaman, karya beliau mencerminkan perasaan kerinduan terhadap kampung halaman itu. Pada ketika itu, karya seni beliau bertumpu ke arah ikatan kekeluargaan, khususnya meneroka perhubungan yang terjalin antara beliau dengan bapa kandung beliau. “Tetapi sekarang sambil saya mula menjalani hidup saya sendiri dalam masyarakat, karya saya cenderung ke arah lebih penekanan ke atas isu-isu semasa yang mengesankan rakyat Malaysia secara amnya,” dedah beliau. Karya beliau berasaskan poprealisme, menggunakan figuratif sebagai alat naratif untuk meluahkan idea beliau. Konsep yang beliau gemar terokai kebiasaannya berkisar tentang dunia di sekeliling diri beliau, daripada pengalaman peribadi hingga peristiwa kebangsaan. Hisyamuddin percaya bahawa kreativiti seorang pelukis dan pandangan yang mereka cuba kongsi bersama dengan seluruh dunia akan membawa lebih makna seandainya ia berdasarkan realiti.

Even though Hisyamuddin sold every piece of artwork at his debut exhibit, he still expresses his concern about the financial instability of artists. “Being a full-time artist means that you depend on the sale of artworks alone for a living,” he says. “On top of that, the Malaysian art scene is still considered young and small, when compared to other countries like Indonesia or the Philippines, which means that the global art market does not really favor the works of Malaysian artists.” He believes that for now, Malaysian artists can only rely on a very small pool of art collectors willing to invest in local talent.


Walapun Hisyamuddin berjaya menjual setiap hasil karyanya di pameran julung beliau, beliau masih meluahkan perasaan bimbangnya tentang ketidakstabilan kewangan seorang pelukis. “Menjadi seorang pelukis sepenuh masa bermakna anda bergantung kepada jualan hasil karya semata-mata sebagai mata pencarian,” ujar beliau. “Selain itu, persekitaran seni di Malaysia masih dianggap awal dan kecil apabila dibandingkan dengan negara lain seperti Indonesia dan Filipina, bererti pasaran seni global tidak menggemari hasil karya pelukis Malaysia.” Beliau percaya bahawa buat masa ini, pelukis Malaysia hanya dapat bergantung kepada sebilangan kecil pengumpul karya seni yang sanggup melabur ke arah bakat-bakat tempatan.

Apart from doing local group exhibitions and international art fairs, Hisyamuddin is currently working towards hosting his second solo exhibition. “If the opportunity arises, I would like to partake in art residencies outside of Malaysia,” he adds. “It will be a welcome challenge. I like stepping outside of my comfort zone.”


Selain mengadakan pameran berkumpulan tempatan dan pertunjukan seni antarabangsa, Hisyamuddin kini sedang dalam usaha menjayakan pameran solo kedua beliau. “Sekiranya peluang timbul, saya ingin menyertai dalam residensi seni di luar Malaysia,” tambah beliau. “Ia akan menjadi cabaran yang dinanti-nantikan. Saya suka keluar daripada zon selesa saya.”

Firefly Studio

March 16, 2016 2016年3月16日

We live in an era of instant gratification and mass production, where large retail conglomerates and corporations like IKEA and Walmart have secured themselves as an essential part of all our lives. Every household is a perfect example: living rooms and bedrooms alike are filled with generic factory-produced furniture and accessories. While undeniably convenient and low-cost, these products lack a sense of craftsmanship and personality. However, there still exists places that offers products with more human ingenuity.


在講求即時滿足感和大規模生產的時代,像宜家和沃爾瑪這樣的大型零售集團已成為我們生活中不可或缺的一部分。幾乎每一個家庭都是一個完美的例子,客廳和臥室都裝滿了工廠量產的傢俱及配件。雖然不可否認它們的便捷低廉,但這些產品卻缺少工藝和個性。儘管如此, 對於那些尋求更具創意和人文因素的產品的人們來說,仍有處可去。

Firefly Studio is one of those places. Tucked away in Taipei’s Da’an district, it’s a boutique that only sells customized lights. The small storefront has a horizontal window facing the street that displays a few of the more recent creations. At the same time, a warm inviting glow seeps from the ornate wooden door, beckoning passersby into the store. Upon entering, visitors will most likely find the owner hunched over his desk, engrossed with one of his new creations, tinkering away.


火金姑工作室就是其中的一個地方。它隱藏在臺北的大安區,是一家只銷售定製燈具的精品店。小店臨街的橫窗裏展示了楊先生最近的一些創作。同時,一簇溫馨誘人的光芒從華麗的木門溢出, 好似在招呼路人進店。進入店內,映入眼簾的很可能是楊先生伏案桌前正全神貫注擺弄著他新作的一幕

The owner is the affable and down-to-earth Yang Kun Jin, a man who’s endlessly fascinated by lights and all things light-related. All of the lights being sold in the shop have been personally customized by him. Mr. Yang has created an extensive collection of ingeniously unorthodox lights through his meticulous approach of reconstructing discarded components, which he combines with an ever-growing collection of unexpected objects. His large stockpile of unusual curios ranges from vintage microscopes to camera tripods. Even various musical instruments like saxophones and trumpets can be spotted around the shop.


老闆是和藹又務實的楊錕金,他深深著迷於燈具以及一切與其相關的事物。店裡每一盞售出的燈都由他親手定制。通過精湛細緻的技藝將廢棄組件重新利用,他一手打造了大量獨特精巧的燈具,並將它們與他不斷收藏的怪物件們結合。他囤積的怪物件品類繁多,從古老的顯微鏡,到相機三腳架,一應俱全;甚至還有各種樂器,你可能發現店裏某個角落裡就有一把薩克斯管。

The inspiration for the name, Firefly Studio, is evident straight away. Countless lights, scattered throughout, illuminates the store in a soothing amber glow, like fireflies in the night. Chandeliers, lamps, pendant lights, and a multitude of other types of eccentric light fixtures fills out the space. Some dangle overhead, others occupy vacant spots on tabletops, and more are strewn about the room in what can be best described as organized chaos; the seemingly random arrangement feels exquisitely deliberate at the same time.


火金姑工作室,這個極具靈感的店名是非常顯而易見的。無數盞燈,通明透亮,整間店也隨之散發著琥珀色光芒,猶如黑夜中的螢火蟲。枝型吊燈,檯燈,垂吊燈和大量其他古怪類型的燈具裝置塞滿了整個空間。一些懸於頭頂,其他的佔據了桌面的空缺,更多的則零亂四散於屋內各處,但再定睛一看,所謂零亂又顯得別有一番精心打理的感覺。

Mr Yang’s creations have garnered praise from all over the globe, tourists and locals alike regularly visit the store. Many customers from abroad that visit the boutique will often end up purchasing something and have it shipped back home. But browsing through the shop, it is all too easy to forget that you are in a store. There are no price tags on any of the items and no pushy up-selling salesmen. The atmosphere in the space is closer to that of an intimate art gallery rather than a typical store, offering consumers a much-needed refreshing change of pace. This place is definitely one worth checking out the next time you’re in Taipei.


楊先生的作品为他赢得來自全球各地的讚賞。遊客和當地人一樣,都經常光顾他的商店。許多來自國外的客人到訪這家精品店之後,總能發現心儀之物並把它們運送回家。當你瀏覽這家商店,你會非常容易忘記你正在商店裏。沒有價格標籤和過分熱情的推銷員,這裡的感覺更像是一處私人的藝術畫廊,為典型購物體驗帶來一絲新鮮。如果下次再來臺北,一定要來光臨。

Facebook: ~/FireflyStudio

 

Contributor & Photographer: David Yen


臉書: ~/火金姑工作室

 

供稿人與攝影師: David Yen

Redesigning Chinese Ceramics

March 15, 2016 2016年3月15日

Many centuries ago, China was already closely associated with porcelain, giving birth to its synonymous association with ceramic pottery. Chinese porcelain was exported out of the country in staggering quantities, especially during the Tang Dynasty. In the late Ming and early Qing Dynasty, the intricate craftsmanship of producing porcelain was reaching new heights and Jingdezhen, widely regarded then as the capital of porcelain, situated itself as one of the most important cities of the era.

Through the course of time, the number of craftsmen in Jingdezhen skyrocketed, but the style and aesthetics of the porcelain creations remains unchanged. The process of creating traditional Chinese porcelain is rather complex, while in the modern world, product design has made many leaps and bounds compared to these traditional crafts. However, a new generation of young people have come together with the common mindset of bringing back Chinese porcelain. While they’re not quite envisioning anything as drastic as reviving the former glory days of Chinese porcelain, they still want to find new ways that it can be reappropriated and become relevant in a modern context. Momoko, a fashion design major from the Hubei Academy of Fine Arts, is one of those young people. In her journey to learn more about the roots of fine Chinese porcelain, she retraced it to its origins in Jingdezhen. Neocha recently spoke with her to learn more about her thoughts on ceramics and design.


早在几百年前,中国就被China这个单词和瓷器紧紧连在了一起。从唐朝开始,中国的瓷器开始大量输出,直到明末清初,瓷器的制造工艺达到了惊人的高度,而在这个时期,景德镇作为出产青花瓷的重要产地,有着非常重要的位置。

几百年以来,景德镇的能工巧匠数以万计,但是风格从某种程度上来说却是一成不变。青花瓷的工艺繁杂,而外面的世界,产品设计早就已经是另外一幅景象。有一群年轻人,在寻求另外一种方式,说是想重振中国瓷器的辉煌的话,可能略显空洞,但是他们确实是在用自己的方式,探索这其中的可行之路。毕业于湖北美术学院服装设计专业的Momoko则是这些年轻人中回到景德镇的一位,或许我们可以从下面的采访中一窥她的设计之道。

Neocha: After graduating with a degree in fashion design, what made you decide to go into a completely different field and start working with ceramics?

Momoko: I was at the Hubei Academy of Fine Arts for four years to study fashion design, but under a terrifyingly rigid, traditional teaching regimen. But that helped me to understand the basics and prepared me with the professional knowledge I needed. After graduating, I started working at a product design company and was designing luggage and bags. I consider the experience I gained at this job to have been crucial towards my growth. The job helped me learn that design has endless possibilities. Anything can incorporate design. I suppose my interest with ceramics comes from my obsession with small and detailed designs. Ceramic is beautiful by itself, but it shouldn’t just be ceramic, and at the same time it should still remain in the realms of ceramics. It would be wrong otherwise. With ceramic design, I only want to create things that are able to invoke joy.


Neocha: 为什么毕业之后没有进入相关行业而是做起了陶瓷设计呢?

Momoko: 我在湖北美院学习了4年关于服装设计的可怕的传统教学,但是也让我明白基础是必须具备的专业知识。毕业之后进入了一家产品设计公司做箱包的设计,这段工作经验非常可贵,让我我学习到什么都可以用来设计。说到我为什么会对陶瓷感兴趣,可能源于对“小小的设计”这点的执念吧!陶瓷非常有魅力,但是它应该不仅仅只是陶瓷,或者完全脱离陶瓷的世界,那都是很错误的。我想做一些人人都能“会心一笑”的陶瓷设计。

Neocha: What made you decide to quit a steady job and start your own brand?

Momoko: I followed my heart. Doesn’t that sound cool? Actually, the truth is every designer has dreams of launching their own brand. Working for someone else as a designer is difficult; your ideas are controlled by somebody else and often cannot be brought to life. So I quit and moved to the porcelain capital Jingdezhen. There I began my exploration into the world of ceramic design.


Neocha: 是什么令你下定决心辞职做自己的品牌呢?

Momoko: 随心所欲,这么说cool吗?其实真话是,每个设计师都想做自己的品牌。同时,作为一个设计师,在给别人工作的过程中发现自己很多的想法受制于人,导致无法实现,所以索性辞职回到瓷器之都景德镇开始做一点关于陶瓷的设计。

Neocha: What do you consider to be the most difficult aspects of design?

Momoko: The hardest part is the endless self-doubt. When I’m facing a work-in-progress, I continually ask myself: will anyone even find this interesting? I’m far too familiar with this state of mind. I can’t get out of it.


Neocha: 你觉得设计这件事最难的是什么?

Momoko: 最难的地方是在于不断否定自己。在一个未完成的设计里,我不断的质问自己:会有人觉得这有趣吗?我对这种状态已经太熟悉了,无法突破。

Neocha: What is the meaning behind your brand name, Xinpingqihe?

Momoko: Xinyi means innovation; pingjia, affordability; qiju, utility; shiyong, practicality. These are my basic requirements for all products.


Neocha: 给自己的品牌取名“新平器合”有什么寓意吗?

Momoko: 新意,平价,器具,实用。这是我对产品最基本的要求。

Neocha: The current design trend is promoting a sense of luxury and a feeling of being high-end. Affordability is a rather interesting approach.

Momoko: I define a good product based on its aesthetics. I am making something within a reasonable budget, and allowing the product to reach as many people as possible. Whether something is luxurious or cheap, it doesn’t matter, the inherent nature of the product doesn’t change. Let me be candid though: I create affordable designs. I’m not trying to depreciate the value of well-thought-out designs. I want people to be able to see design in its most honest and true-to-self form.

 


Neocha: 都在主打“高大上”的设计主流下,“平价”倒是很有意思的设定。

Momoko: 我对产品的定义是使用感,在可以实现的成本上,将产品最大范围的推广出去。但实际上高大上也好,平价也好,产品所蕴含的意义都不会变。但我毫不保留的说,我的设计是平价化,而不是廉价卖出设计,是将设计最平实的状态让人接触到。

Neocha: Porcelain is an important part of Chinese history, but Japanese porcelain has been widely praised for their quality and design. Many aspects of your design seems to incorporate Japanese influences. What are your thoughts on that?

Momoko: I like incorporating Japanese styles into my designs, but there are also times where I prefer not to have any elements of Japanese design in my work. So I think everyone can see my style preference is quite dynamic. In the grand scheme of things, porcelain hasn’t been around that long in the course of history. It wasn’t around before humans existed, humans created it, so how it looks is all dependent on the creator. It could be me, it could be you, there are no boundaries.


Neocha: 瓷器在中国历史悠久,但是日本的瓷器却在质量和设计上为世界其他国家的人称道,而你的作品中很多设计都是有日本元素的你对此有什么看法?

Momoko: 我喜欢我的设计里有日本元素,但是就算日本元素我也有不想使用的部分,于是大家能看到的都是相对积极的一面。陶瓷在历史上没有太久的历史,它不比人类出现的时间长,因为人类创造它,所以用什么样的面貌展示它都在于创造它的人。是我,也可以是你。没有那么多界限。

Contributor: Taylor Shen
Images Courtesy of Momoko


供稿人: Taylor Shen
图片由Momoko提供

The Work of Rachel Mantiri

March 14, 2016 2016年3月14日

Rachel Mantiri is a Jakarta-based mixed media artist with an affinity for the human form. Her cut and paste technique used in conjunction with an ethereal utilization of space creates emotive pieces. She begins each piece without any intentions of conveying a specific vibe, but rather goes with a more spontaneous and organic approach. Much of Rachel’s work is based simply on projections of her personal mood and feelings during the creative process. Neocha recently spoke with this talented artist about her work and inspirations.


Rachel Mantiri adalah artis media campuran yang berbasis di Jakarta dengan ketertarikan pada bentuk manusia. Teknik potong dan tempelnya yang digunakan dalam hubungannya dengan pemanfaatan ruang secara halus menciptakan potongan-potongan emosional. Ia memulai setiap bagian tanpa niat menyampaikan getaran tertentu, alih-alih ia menggunakan pendekatan yang lebih spontan dan organik. Banyak dari karya Rachel didasarkan pada proyeksi dari suasana hati dan perasaan pribadinya selama proses kreatif tersebut. Neocha baru-baru ini bercakap-cakap dengan seniman berbakat ini tentang pekerjaan dan inspirasinya.

Neocha: How did you get started on your creative journey?

Rachel: It all started in middle school when I was first introduced to anime. The aesthetics appealed to me and I wanted to try it out. Most of my school days were spent drawing anime and manga. I went on to study visual communications, and pursued a career in graphic design in Singapore. I also worked in publishing for a couple of years and that is where I had my first introduction to fashion. My journey then took me to Bali, where I worked in fashion photography for a couple of years. Throughout that time, I’ve experimented with multiple different art forms and aesthetics. This led to me building up an interest in various forms of art: from dark to surreal, psychedelic to minimal. Through my artistic experimentation I have learned new trades and gained interest in new mediums. Every new trade I have mastered has improved the quality of my last. For example, learning the concept of lighting techniques for photography has made me a better illustrator. Moreover, if I take the thought process that I apply as an illustrator and utilise it in my design work, I create better concepts.


Neocha: Bagaimanakah Anda memulai perjalanan kreatif Anda?

Rachel: Semua dimulai di sekolah menengah ketika saya pertama kali diperkenalkan kepada anime. Estetikanya menarik bagi saya dan saya ingin mencobanya. Sebagian besar hari-hari sekolah saya dihabiskan untuk menggambar anime dan manga. Saya melanjutkan ke studi komunikasi visual, dan mengejar karier desain grafis di Singapura. Saya juga bekerja di penerbitan selama beberapa tahun dan di situlah untuk pertama kalinya saya berkenalan dengan mode. Perjalanan saya kemudian membawa saya ke Bali, di mana saya bekerja di bidang fotografi mode selama beberapa tahun. Sepanjang waktu itu, saya bereksperimen dengan berbagai bentuk dan estetika seni yang berbeda. Hal ini membangun minat saya dalam berbagai bentuk seni: dari gelap sampai surealis, psikadelik sampai minimal. Melalui eksperimen artistik saya telah belajar keterampilan-keterampilan baru dan menemukan ketertarikan pada media-media baru. Setiap keterampilan baru yang telah saya kuasai meningkatkan kualitas saya. Misalnya, belajar konsep teknik pencahayaan untuk fotografi telah membuat saya menjadi seorang ilustrator yang lebih baik. Selain itu, jika saya menggunakan proses berpikir yang saya terapkan sebagai ilustrator dan memanfaatkannya dalam pekerjaan desain saya, saya akan membuat konsep yang lebih baik.

Neocha: How do you choose a subject or topic to illustrate? For you, is there a lengthy process of research, or are you more likely to be inspired to create in the spur of the moment?

Rachel: Somewhere in between, I think. There are times when I will do research subconsciously. For example, when I’m reading an article about mythology and then a few days later I’m incorporating some of the content from that article into my next piece of work. I guess daily life chooses my subjects for me at times too. The process is obviously very different for commissioned work. Research and development is necessary in that aspect, but not too much – otherwise it just begins to clutter my process.


Neocha: Bagaimana Anda memilih subjek atau topik ilustrasi? Bagi Anda, apakah ada proses penelitian yang panjang, atau Anda lebih mungkin terinspirasi untuk berkarya secara mendadak?

Rachel: Saya rasa, di antara keduanya. Ada saat-saat ketika saya secara sadar akan melakukan penelitian. Misalnya, ketika saya membaca sebuah artikel tentang mitologi dan kemudian beberapa hari kemudian saya memasukkan beberapa konten dari artikel tersebut menjadi bagian dari pekerjaan saya yang berikutnya. Saya kira kadang-kadang kehidupan sehari-hari juga memilihkan subjek-subjek untuk saya. Proses ini jelas sangat berbeda untuk pekerjaan tugas. Penelitian dan pengembangan jelas diperlukan dalam aspek itu, tetapi tidak terlalu banyak – jika tidak maka hal itu hanya akna mengacaukan proses saya.

Neocha: Taking photographs and including them into your illustrations creates a surrealist collage effect. How do you feel about combining media? Do you prefer to use digital illustration programs, or is cutting and pasting in real life more fun for you?

Rachel: I think it is more about which medium is suited best for getting the idea across. There are certain effects I can only achieve by doing things digitally, and similarly there are certain vibes I can only achieve with traditional cut and paste. Some subjects work better photographed, and some work better drawn. They are all fun to work on.


Neocha: Memfoto dan memasukkannya ke dalam ilustrasi Anda menciptakan efek kolase surealis. Bagaimana perasaan Anda terhadap penggabungan media? Apakah Anda lebih suka memilih menggunakan program ilustrasi digital, atau apakah memotong dan menempelkan dalam kehidupan nyata lebih menyenangkan bagi Anda?

Rachel: Menurut saya hal itu lebih kepada mengenai media mana yang paling cocok untuk mewujudkan idenya. Ada efek tertentu yang hanya bisa dihasilkan dengan melakukan hal-hal secara digital, dan juga ada getaran tertentu yang hanya bisa dihasilkan dengan potong dan temple secara tradisional. Beberapa subjek lebih baik difoto, dan beberapa karya lebih baik digambar. Semuanya menyenangkan untuk dikerjakan.

Neocha: What is your favourite piece of work? Why is it so special to you?

Rachel: Mask – this is an image that I had retained in the back of my mind for quite some time. One that I wanted to execute in my early years but lacked the skill to complete. It is a favourite because there was no pre-planning or research involved. It was a spur of the moment piece that I did as a break between other works. Only when it was completed did I realise that this was that  piece I had always wanted to create in the past. My subconscious mindset somehow took over.


Neocha: Apakah karya favorit Anda? Mengapa begitu spesial untuk Anda?

Rachel: Mask – ini adalah gambar yang telah tertahan dalam pikiran saya selama beberapa waktu. Salah satu yang ingin saya kerjakan pada tahun-tahun awal saya tetapi saya tidak memiliki keterampilan untuk menyelesaikannya. Ini favorit karena tidak ada perencanaan atau penelitian apa pun sebelumnya. Ini adalah karya dadakan yang saya kerjakan di sela-sela karya lainnya. Hanya saja ketika karya itu selesai saya menyadari bahwa ini adalah karya yang selalu ingin saya buat di masa lalu. Pola pikir bawah sadar saya entah bagaimana mengambil alih.

Neocha: Tell us more about your photography process. How do you like to shoot, and what do you shoot with?

Rachel: My basic setup is a Canon 7D, 70-200mm f2.8 lens and two Elinchrom strobe lights. Sometimes I rely on natural light, but given the choice, I prefer to shoot in the studio because of the control I have over lighting.


Neocha: Ceritakan lebih banyak mengenai proses fotografi Anda. Dengan cara bagaimana Anda suka mengambil foto dan kamera apa yang Anda gunakan?

Rachel: Setelan dasar saya ialah Canon 7D, lensa 70-200mm f2,8 dan dua lampu strobo Elinchrom. Kadang-kadang saya mengandalkan cahaya alami, tapi jika diberi pilihan, saya lebih memilih untuk mengambil gambar di studio karena saya lebih dapat mengendalikan pencahayaannya.

Neocha: Can you recommend some places that creative-minded people would enjoy in Indonesia?

Rachel: Indonesia is rich in culture and nature. There are so many places where creative-minded people would enjoy. If I had to name just one, it would be Bali – the vibe is so laid back and the beaches are amazing. The people there are crazy creative; I discovered myself as an artist there.


Neocha: Dapatkah Anda merekomendasikan beberapa lokasi di Indonesia yang dapat dinikmati oleh mereka yang berpikiran kreatif?

Rachel: Indonesia kaya secara budaya dan alam. Ada banyak tempat yang akan dapat dinikmati oleh orang-orang berpikiran kreatif. Jika saya harus menyebutkan satu, saya akan menyebut Bali – getarannya sangat tenang dan pantai-pantainya menakjubkan. Orang-orang di sana gila-gilaan kreatifnya; Saya menemukan jati diri saya sebagai artis di sana.

Neocha: You were born in Indonesia and you’ve spent a few years in Singapore, but now you find yourself back in your homeland.  Tell us about Singapore and Indonesia’s creative community or creative industry.

Rachel: I was born in Jakarta but I spent most of my years growing up in Sri Lanka. I moved to Singapore for six years, and then Bali for three years, and I am now based in Jakarta. The creative industry varies in all the places I’ve stayed and at times it has been non-existent. Regardless, there’s always a small community of artists, designers, and photographers everywhere. Being fully immersed into the Jakarta creative community is something I’m really looking forward to.


Neocha: Anda lahir di Indonesia dan Anda menghabiskan beberapa tahun di Singapura, tapi sekarang Anda kembali di tanah air Anda. Beritahu kami mengenai komunitas atau industri kreatif Singapura dan Indonesia.

Rachel: Saya lahir di Jakarta tapi saya menghabiskan sebagian besar tahun saya tumbuh di Sri Lanka. Saya pindah ke Singapura selama enam tahun, dan kemudian Bali selama tiga tahun, dan saya sekarang tinggal di Jakarta. Industri kreatif bervariasi di semua tempat yang pernah saya tinggali dan ada kalanya seperti tidak ada. Apa pun, selalu ada komunitas kecil seniman, desainer, dan fotografer di mana-mana. Menjadi sepenuhnya merasuk ke dalam komunitas kreatif Jakarta adalah sesuatu yang benar-benar saya nantikan.

Websiterachelmantiri.com
Facebook~/rm.moodscape
Instagram: @moodscape

 

Contributor: Mireille Paul


Situs web: rachelmantiri.com
Facebook: ~/rm.moodscape
Instagram: @moodscape

 

Kontributor: Mireille Paul

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The Temple Hotel

March 11, 2016 2016年3月11日
Photo Credit / 图片来源: Ben McMillan

The history of The Temple Hotel in Beijing spans back to the early Qing Dynasty when it was first built as three Tibetan Buddhist temples, located between the Northeast corner of the Forbidden City and Jingshan Park. This area where the temples are situated was also the site for imperial printing workshops that date even further back to the Ming Dynasty, producing Buddhist sutras and religious books for temples around Beijing and elsewhere in China. In 1949 soon after the founding of the People’s Republic of China, however, a large number of Beijing’s 3,000 former temples were converted into factories and other kinds of utilitarian spaces, or were demolished as the city gradually started to modernize. Over the course of time, Zhizhusi, the temple that today lies at the very heart of The Temple Hotel complex, was also neglected, and was at one point even used as a storage space, slowly and ultimately falling into disrepair. In 2007, when the founders of The Temple Hotel first came across the site, they discovered that it too would be demolished if no entity stepped forward and made an attempt to renovate it.


北京东景缘酒店历史可追溯至清朝早期所建的藏传佛教嵩祝三寺酒店位于紫禁城的东北角和景山公园之间早在明朝时期,这里就设有皇家印刷厂,即汉经厂,负责为北京及全国其他各地的寺庙刻板印刷佛经和宗教典籍。然而,1949年新中国建立后不久,北京3000多座寺庙中有相当一部分不是被改造成工厂和其他使用场所,就是在城市的现代化进程中被拆毁。随着时间推移,如今坐落于东景缘酒店正中心的智珠寺,也一度受到忽略,甚至被用来当做储藏室,终究难逃破败不堪的命运。2007年,东景缘酒店的创建人第一次来这里时,他们发现,如果再不采取实质性措施,这里将被摧毁于是出面翻新寺庙

Photo Credit / 图片来源: Ben McMillan
Photo Credit / 图片来源: Ben McMillan

When The Temple Hotel team decided to take up the challenge of renovating the centuries-old Buddhist temple, they had one very important goal in mind, which was to conserve and preserve all of the buildings’ history. In order to do this, they brought in specialized architects, surveyors, and small teams from knowledgable construction companies, who then methodically removed the rubble and debris from the site, uncovered the columns, and very carefully restored every beam and every tile from the structures. It took the restoration team a few years to complete the project, but finally in 2012 when it was finished, The Temple Hotel received a UNESCO Asia-Pacific Award of Merit for Cultural Heritage Conservation. Today, in addition to being a beautiful first-class boutique hotel, it is also a cultural venue that is open to the public every day, and is widely regarded as one of the best examples of heritage preservation in the Asia region.


当东景缘酒店团队决定开始接受翻新这个古老藏传佛教寺庙的挑战时,他们有一个重要的目标,就是留存住寺庙所有建筑的历史。为了实现这一目标,他们请来了专业的设计师、测量员、并从专业的建筑公司请来团队。这些团队负责系统地做清理工作。修复小组用了几年的时间来做这项工作,最终2012年他们完成任务时,东景缘酒店接到了联合国教科文组织颁发的亚太文化遗产保护优秀奖。如今,这里不仅是一流的精品酒店,还是一个开放的文化场所,被人们普遍认为是亚洲文化遗产保护的最佳典范之一。

Photo Credit / 图片来源: Ben McMillan

The Main Hall, both the architectural core and showpiece of The Temple Hotel, is regularly used for hosting cultural events, such as theater performances, music recitals, film screenings, formal banquets, and other art happenings. The buildings running along the Eastern side of The Temple Hotel have been tastefully fitted for conferences and meetings with period furniture and art installations. Even the lighting, both natural and artificial, in and around these spaces has been carefully considered to enhance and draw out the spiritual aspects of this former temple. During sunset, there is indeed a magical and intangible quality to the natural light that fills up these rooms.


礼堂,是东景缘酒店的建筑核心和艺术品展示区,经常用于举办各类文化活动,例如戏剧表演、音乐演奏、电影放映、正式宴会以及其他艺术活动。酒店东面的建筑经过改造内部装饰古今混搭具有艺术气息,适合举办各类会议。即便是这些空间内外的自然采光和人工灯光,都经过精心设置,为古寺的精神增加风采。日落时分,室内会映射进神奇的自然之光。

In the Gallery, The Temple Hotel exhibits its own art collection; the space regularly features the work of local and international artists. Past art events have included private viewings of classical and contemporary carpets, documentary and art film screenings, outdoor projections in the courtyard outside the main hall, as well as performances from world-famous musicians, and an ongoing series of classical music recitals. In the past few years, the photography work of Robert Doisneau, He Chongyue, and Irene Kung have all also been exhibited at the Gallery. Art and culture have always been an integral and vital part of The Temple Hotel’s identity. According to its founders, the reimagined space has always been planned as a living museum and cultural arts space.


东景缘酒店的画廊里不仅拥有自己的艺术典藏品;且常常举办中国和世界各地艺术家们的作品展。过去举办过的活动有古典和现代地毯私享展、纪录片和艺术电影放映、在礼堂外进行户外投影,以及世界知名音乐家的演奏会和一系列的古典音乐演出。在过去几年中,Robert Doisneau、He Chongyue和Irene Kung的摄影作品也在画廊里展出过。艺术和文化一直是东景缘酒店不可分割的一部分。酒店创建人的想法,一直都是要将改造的这个空间当做是生活博物馆和文化艺术空间。

 

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The Temple Hotel is home to the permanent installation Gathered Sky by world-renowned American artist James Turrell. His first and only work in China, Turrell’s installation spectacularly explores light, color, and the subtle nuances of human perception. It is also China’s only Skyspace, a specially constructed room with an open ceiling that allows visitors to view the sky above. Over the course of a few hours, viewers can observe the slowly changing colors of the sky during a sunset, juxtaposed with the shifting colors of the controlled artificial lighting within the chamber. The effect is a surprisingly moving, contemplative, and at times deeply personal experience. Sunset viewing sessions may be attended by the general public every Saturday and Sunday with the purchase of an admission ticket.


东景缘酒店是世界著名美国艺术家James Turrell的装置作品《Gathered Sky》的永久陈列处。作为他在中国的第一个且唯一一个作品,Turrell的这个装置进行了对光、色彩、以及人的微妙感知的探索。这也是中国唯一的Skyspace装置艺术——一个特别建造的房间,敞开的天花板,可以让游客观赏上面的天空。游客在几个小时内就能在这个房间内看到日落时天空慢慢变化的色彩,同时伴随着的还有人工控制照明的颜色变化。视觉效果令人感动和沉思,让人为之惊奇印象深刻。公众可以在周六或周日买票来观看日落灯光艺术。

Photo Credit / 图片来源: Ben McMillan
Photo Credit / 图片来源: Ben McMillan
Photo Credit / 图片来源: Ben McMillan

Upcoming art events this year include the screening of Air of Earth, a chapter from the six channel video installation Earth-Water-Fire-Air  by the South Korean multi-disciplinary conceptual artist Kimsooja. Her work will be projected outdoors every night between 6:30pm and 11pm starting 16 March. Over the summer, there will also be a photography exhibit by the French artist Olivier Roller, in which he will feature images of the Xi’an terracotta warriors juxtaposed with Roman statues. Later in the fall, The Temple Hotel is discussing with Galleria Continua to feature video art by the Belgian visual artist Hans Op de Beeck, as well as showing new work from the Swiss photographer Irene Kung. The exciting and diverse range of cultural activities planned for the current year, combined with the rich history of the site’s buildings, make The Temple Hotel a must-visit destination for travellers and local art lovers alike. The next time you are in Beijing, be sure to give it a visit!


今年要举办的活动有《Air of Earth》的放映,《Air of Earth》是韩国多学科概念派艺术家Kimsooja(金守子)的六频道视频装置《Earth-Water-Fire-Air》中的一章。自3月16日起,她的作品将于每晚6:30到11点间在礼堂外投影播放。今年夏季,还有法国艺术家Olivier Roller的摄影展,展出西安兵马俑和古罗马雕像并置的图片。到秋季,东景缘酒店正在和常青画廊谈展出比利时视觉艺术家Hans Op de Beeck的视频艺术,以及展出瑞士摄影家Irene Kung的新作品。本年度文化活动规划的多种多样,加上这里建筑群的饱满历史,使得东景缘酒店成为游客和本土艺术爱好者的必到之地。下次您来北京,一定要去观赏!

Aire de Tierra / Air of Earth (2009) by Kimsooja, Still from Earth - Water - Fire – Air , Commissioned by Hermes Foundation, Paris
《土之气》(2009)作者:金守子,静态画面截取自《土-水-火-气》,受爱马仕企业基金会委托,巴黎
Night Time (2015) by Hans Op de Beeck, Courtesy of Galleria Continua / 《Night Time》 (2015) 作者: Hans Op de Beeck,由常青画廊提供。

Address:
Shatan Beijie Songzhuyuan 23
Dongcheng District, Beijing
People’s Republic of China

Phone: 8402 1350

Website: thetemplehotel.com
WeChat: thetemplehotelbj

 

Contributor: Leon Yan
I
mages Courtesy of The Temple Hotel & Ben McMillan
Image of Aire de Tierra / Air of Earth Courtesy of Axel Vervoordt Gallery, Antwerp and Kimsooja Studio
Video Courtesy of The Temple Hotel


地址:
中国 北京市东城区
沙滩北街嵩祝院23号


电话
: 8402 1350

网站: thetemplehotel.com
微信: thetemplehotelbj

 

供稿人: Leon Yan
图片由The Temple HotelBen McMillan提供
静态画面截取自《土之气》由Axel Vervoordt画廊与金守子工作室提供
视频由The Temple Hotel提供

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My Americans

March 10, 2016 2016年3月10日

As a Chinese American whose family has been in the States for generations, AnRong Xu has long been drawn to his own ancestry as it ties in to American history. “I had many questions about our place as an ethnic group in America, and it led to me traveling across the United States in search of what it means to be a Chinese American,” he shares. Shaped by memories of “a childhood of seeing my mother work in a sweatshop, my father bellying up to the wok, and a Chinatown filled with hopes and dreams for my generation,” AnRong Xu sought to depict through his photographs the distinctive experience of Chinese Americans across the States.


作為一位其祖上已有數代人居住在美國的華裔,許​​安榮對自己的血統深有關注,因為那與美國的歷史密不可分。 “對於我們族群在美國的處境,我有太多想了解的。這促使我穿行美國,以尋找作為美籍華人的意義。”他告訴我們。在他的記憶中,“童年是親眼看著雙親拼死做工,被生活壓得無以喘息,還有對於我們這代人充滿寄希的唐人街”,因此許安榮尋求藉攝影來展示美籍華人在美國的獨特經歷。

Scroll below for a sampling of photographs from AnRong’s project My Americans, and visit his VSCO Journal to see the full post.

Follow AnRong’s work at anrizzy.vsco.co.


以下照片節選自安榮的《My Americans》系列,點擊此處查看完整系列。

通過anrizzy.vsco.co可關注安榮的作品。

For his project, AnRong hopes to “create an idea and a record of an American people,” journeying to Chinatowns across the States and meeting individuals to hear their stories. His project is a combination of portraits, stills of people’s homes or belongings that speak to who they are, and scenes of everyday life in Chinese American communities. “For the most part, I just wander and get lost, and sometimes I come upon my subject, and sometimes I don’t, but the journey in itself is where I find most of my pictures.”

 


他深入美國各地的中國城,遍訪華裔們,傾聽他們的故事。在這個項目上,安榮希望可以“表現並記錄美籍華裔族群”。這個系列記錄的是華裔們的肖像、住所、代表他們的物品,以及這個社群的日常生活。 “大多數時候,我只是遊走、迷失,有的時候我會碰上我的拍攝對象,有的時候不會,但是正是這個旅程本身讓我完成了多數的拍攝。”

One of the most rewarding elements of the project for AnRong Xu has been the personal interactions he’s shared with fellow Chinese Americans. “For me, the most compelling people and situations are often the quiet ones. I feel often as a society we talk too much and don’t show enough. So when I’m with a subject or in a situation, I love the silence and quiet moments that I can share with the subjects or just with myself. And in all those moments, I find that the human story is the most compelling; so many of the people I photograph had sacrificed so much to be in this country, and now here they are living and surviving.”


對安榮來說,創作這組作品最大的收穫就是他得以和這些受訪華裔們的互動。 “對我來說,最動人的人和狀況往往是非常安靜的。這個社會裡的我們都說的太多做的太少了。所以當我與拍攝對像在一起時,或者身處某個狀況中,我喜歡那些能夠和對方一起,或者只是自己靜默的時刻。往往是那些時刻中,我才發現一個平凡人的故事最為動人;我拍攝的人裡,有很多曾幾乎傾盡所有以生活在這個國家,而放眼此時此刻,他們正在此地生生不息著。”

A self-described romantic, AnRong says that although his style has evolved since he first started photographing in high school, the quality of being a romantic has remained and is today the defining aspect of his work. This reflective quality led him to consider the abstract idea of identity and its practical implications in individuals’ lives. “Through this project, there has been a lot of maturation for myself,” AnRong acknowledges. “Seeing and learning of others’ experiences as Chinese Americans in this country helps bring a bit more of an understanding of what it means to be American for myself. It has also revealed so many different stories of struggle, success, and different journeys that I feel privileged to be able to know and also share via my photographs.”


自恃為浪漫主義者,安榮說,儘管自己的風格自高中開始攝影后已有變化,但是他浪漫主義一面一直延續至今,並成為他現在作品的特質。這個特質引導他開始思索關於個人身份的抽象意識,以及其與現實生活產生的化學反應。 “我也隨著創作這個系列而越來越成熟。”安榮坦承道,“目睹、了解這個國家其他華裔的經歷,讓我更加理解了身為美國人到底意味著什麼。得益於這次創作,我有幸用照片去展示如此多的掙扎、成功,如此多不同的人生旅程。”

This story is part of a content partnership and media exchange between Neocha and VSCO®. To see more of VSCO’s Asia content on Neocha, click here.


本篇文章來自內容合作夥伴Neocha和VSCO®的媒體交換。在Neocha上閱讀更多VSCO的亞洲主題文章,請點擊此處

Website: anrongxu.com
VSCO Gridvsco.co/anrizzy

 

Media Partner: VSCO®
Photographer: AnRong Xu
Images & Text Courtesy of VSCO Grid®


网站: anrongxu.com
VSCO Gridvsco.co/anrizzy

 

媒體合作夥伴: VSCO®
攝影師: AnRong Xu
圖片與文字由VSCO Grid®提供

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Mixing Architecture with Comics

March 9, 2016 2016年3月9日

Eu Jin Lim is a Kuala Lumpur-based artist and architect, who graduated from The Glasgow School of Arts. Having previously worked in firms in Malaysia, China and Japan, he has managed to accumulate graphical and architectural experience both locally and abroad. Growing up, he was exposed to comic books and manga. The illustrations of these graphic novels left a deep impression on him, and Eu Jin’s fascination with the medium only grew from there. Nowadays, he creates comics of his own by combining stylistic elements of technical architectural blueprints into manga-styled sequential frames.


Eu Jin Lim merupakan seorang artis dan arkitek yang berpangkalan di Kuala Lumpur, berkelulusan daripada Glasgow School of Arts. Dengan bekerja dalam firma-firma di Malaysia, China dan Jepun sebelum ini, beliau telah berjaya mengumpulkan pengalaman grafik dan senibina kedua-duanya dari dalam dan luar negeri. Semasa membesar, beliau telah didedahkan dengan buku-buku komik dan manga. Ilustrasi dalam novel grafik ini meninggalkan kesan mendalam ke atas beliau, dan ketaksuban Eu Jin dalam media ini berkembang dari situ. Dewasa ini, beliau mencipta komik tersendiri dengan menggabungkan unsur-unsur yang mempunyai gaya cetakan biru senibina dengan petak-petak turutan dalam gaya manga.

Eu Jin’s first project was A Repository for the Fairy Tales Culture. This piece of work celebrates the history and tradition of fairy tales culture in Copenhagen. He drew inspiration from the popular fantastical tales written by the famed Danish author, Hans Christian Anderson, and it was created as part of Eu Jin Lim’s master thesis. Forgoing the typical style of architectural diagrams filled with arrows, figures and numbers, he creatively added other fantastical elements and details by weaving in a story about a character running through the actual city of Copenhagen. Eu Jin continued his experimentation of mixing architecture with comics in his next two series, Drawing Soane’s and Drawing the Blue Mansion.


Projek pertama Eu Jin ialah Repositori untuk Budaya Hikayat Dongeng Pari-pari. Hasil kerja ini meraikan sejarah dan tradisi budaya hikayat dongeng pari-pari di Copenhagen. Beliau memerah ilham daripada hikayat popular mengagumkan nukilan pengarang terkenal Denmark, Hans Christian Anderson, dan ia dicipta sebagai sebahagian daripada tesis sarjana Eu Jin Lim. Dengan melepaskan gaya diagram senibina yang lazimnya dipenuhi dengan anak panah, angka dan nombor, beliau secara kreatif menambah unsur-unsur dan butir-butir mengagumkan yang lain dengan menyulamkan kisah tentang watak yang melalui bandar raya Copenhagen yang sebenar. Eu Jin meneruskan eksperimen beliau yang mencampur aduk senibina dengan komik dalam dua siri beliau yang seterusnya, Melukis Soane dan Melukis Rumah Agam Biru.

Drawing the Blue Mansion was published in collaboration with Laurence Loh and Lin Lee Loh Lim of the landmark Blue Mansion in Penang, Malaysia. It is based on the romanticized daily life of Cheong Fatt Tze and his seventh wife, Tan Tay Po. The drawings are a pictorial and graphical narration to the history and heritage of the Blue Mansion. Neocha recently had the opportunity to talk to Eu Jin about the inspiration behind this project as well as his artistic approach.


Melukis Rumah Agam Biru telah diterbitkan dengan kerjasama Laurence Loh dan Lin Lee Loh Lim daripada Rumah Agam Biru yang menjadi satu mercu tanda di Pulau Pinang, Malaysia. Ia didasarkan daripada olahan secara romantik kehidupan harian Cheong Fatt Tze dan isteri ketujuh beliau, Tan Tay Po. Lukisan-lukisan adalah penceritaan bergambar dan bergrafik ke atas sejarah dan warisan Rumah Agam Biru. Neocha baru-baru ini telah berpeluang untuk berbual dengan Eu Jin tentang ilham di sebalik projek ini serta pendekatan seni yang beliau gunakan.

Neocha: Can you share with us how the Blue Mansion became a source of inspiration for you?

Eu Jin: After being back home in Malaysia, I was looking for a piece of architecture that has qualities I could use to put my art to the test. The iconic Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion (aka The Blue Mansion) was the best place for the job. It’s situated in the world heritage site of George Town. This award-winning edifice is a testimony to the stunning brilliance of eclectic architecture in the Straits Settlements and has been an unending source of creativity. There are so many hidden stories that lie behind the architectural details, form, and spaces. On the other hand, it is also a place that has a romantic love story to go along with the architecture. The idea was to put the heritage of the architecture into a newly drawn perspective – for both tourists and locals alike.


Neocha: Bolehkah anda berkongsi dengan kami bagaimana Rumah Agam Biru menjadi sumber ilham anda?

Eu Jin: Selepas kembali ke Malaysia, saya tercari-cari karya senibina yang mempunyai kualiti yang saya boleh gunakan sebagai ujian ke atas karya seni saya. Rumah Agam Cheong Fatt Tze (juga dikenali sebagai Rumah Agam Biru) yang ikonik merupakan calon terbaik untuk tugasan ini. Ia terletak dalam tapak warisan dunia George Town. Bangunan yang memenangi anugerah ini adalah perakuan kepada keunggulan mengagumkan senibina eklektik di Negeri-negeri Selat dan telah menjadi sumber kreativiti yang tiada hentinya. Terdapat banyak kisah tersembunyi yang tersirat di sebalik perincian, bentuk dan ruang senibinanya. Dengan kata lain, ia juga merupakan tempat yang memiliki kisah cinta romantik untuk diceritakan bersama-sama dengan senibinanya. Ideanya ialah untuk meletakkan warisan senibina ke dalam perspektif baharu yang dilukiskan  untuk kedua-dua pelancong dan juga penduduk tempatan.

Neocha: When did you first become interested in drawing?

Eu Jin: I have always been a big fan of comics. But I am more fascinated by their illustration techniques than the actual stories. I was exposed to many works from Japanese manga, Hong-Kong man-wa, western comics, and Malaysian comic strips at a very young age. They were all conveniently available at barbershops, grocery shops and even hawker stores. At that time, I would even select a page with a layout I liked, then try to imitate it exactly on another sheet of paper, and I would consider it to be my own work. Maybe that explains the strict, poster-like page layout in in the majority of my work.


Neocha: Bilakah anda mula-mula menanam minat melukis?

Eu Jin: Saya sememangnya selama ini seorang peminat setia komik. Tetapi saya lebih teruja dengan teknik ilustrasinya daripada kisah sebenar yang dijalinkan. Saya telah didedahkan dengan banyak hasil kerja daripada manga Jepun, man-wa Hong-Kong, komic barat dan jalur komik Malaysia pada usia yang amat muda. Semuanya boleh didapati dengan mudah di kedai gunting, kedai runcit malah di kedai makan juga. Pada ketika itu, saya akan memilih halaman dengan tataletak yang saya suka, kemudian menirunya bulat-bulat di atas sehelai kertas lain dan saya anggap itu ialah hasil kerja saya sendiri. Mungkin inilah sebabnya mengapa kebanyakan hasil kerja saya mempunyai tataletak halaman seperti poster yang kemas.

Neocha: How did you get the idea to combine storytelling with architectural orthographic drawings?

Eu Jin: I have no intentions of challenging the precision and informative qualities orthographic drawings can offer. However, architecture in most cases, is good only with the stories of people in it. I’ve always found both sides of the stories relevant in any great architecture. For me, having the crossover between both mediums is when you’d find interesting moments in your drawings. They share many technical similarities in terms of how they deal with lines, frames, gutters, and layout. I have borrowed techniques from both comic artists and architects. Scripting, planning, and storyboarding in general took a long time compared to the actual production of these drawings.


Neocha: Bagaimanakah anda mendapat idea untuk menggabungkan penceritaan kisah dengan lukisan ortografi senibina?

Eu Jin: Saya tidak berniat untuk mencabar kualiti bermaklumat dan berketepatan yang ditawarkan oleh sesebuah lukisan ortografi. Walau bagaimanapun, dalam kebanyakan kes, senibina adalah menarik hanya apabila dihiasi dengan kisah daripada mereka yang mendiaminya. Saya sering dapati bahawa kedua-dua sudut cerita adalah relevan dalam mana-mana senibina yang hebat. Bagi saya, mempunyai silang lintas di antara kedua-dua media adalah apabila anda menemui saat-saat menarik dalam lukisan anda. Ia berkongsi banyak persamaan teknikal dari segi bagaimana garisan, rangka, alur dan tataletak digunakan. Saya telah meminjam teknik daripada kedua-dua artis komik dan arkitek. Penulisan skrip, perancangan dan pembuatan papan cerita secara amnya mengambil masa yang lama berbanding penghasilan sebenar lukisan-lukisan ini.

Neocha: Does the way you approach these drawings affect how you think as an architect? What do you have planned for the future?

Eu Jin: Very much so. Hopefully other people who have the same passion can see it. However, I am hoping that these drawings could maybe take shape in a three dimensional format in the near future. These techniques are not something totally new, we’ve seen recent architects and artists like Jimenez Lai, Chris Ware, Li Han, CJ Lim, Joost Swarte, and many others that have constantly explored the potential of these mediums that I’ve referred to throughout the course of my works. I hope that my drawings can be on par with the work of my idols someday.


Neocha: Adakah cara anda mendekati lukisan-lukisan ini memberi kesan kepada bagaimana anda berfikir sebagai seorang arkitek? Apakah yang anda telah rancang untuk masa depan?

Eu Jin: Lebih kurang begitulah. Harap-harap orang lain yang mempunyai minat yang sama dapat merasakannya. Walau bagaimanapun, saya berharap agar lukisan-lukisan ini mungkin dapat dibentuk dalam format tiga dimensi tidak lama lagi. Teknik ini bukanlah sesuatu yang baharu sepenuhnya, kita telah melihat arkitek-arkitek yang baharu seperti Jimenez Lai, Chris Ware, Li Han, CJ Lim, Joost Swarte dan ramai lagi yang telah secara berterusan menerokai potensi yang ada pada media ini yang telah saya terapkan ke keseluruhan karya saya. Saya berharap agar lukisan-lukisan saya dapat mencapai tahap yang setara dengan karya idola saya satu hari nanti.

Websitecargocollective.com/eujinlim

 

Contributor: Banny Wang


Laman webcargocollective.com/eujinlim

 

Penyumbang: Banny Wang

What’s Up Plant?

March 8, 2016 2016年3月8日

Ting Cheng, born in Taipei, is an artist whose work is a delicate fusion of graphic design, photography, styling and installation art. Ting has established her unique style by using unexpected material, and always seems to be able to put a smile on the viewer’s face.

In her latest project What’s Up Plant?, Ting uses her iconic photographs of plants and juxtaposes them with a brand new series of sculptures, demonstrating her enthusiasm for all things plant-related. Ting reinvents the world around her into something surreal but at the same time honest. Through a personal interpretation of her environment, she interacts with these plants and shows them her love in a witty and humorous way. Neocha recently spoke with Ting about the inspirations behind her work as well as her latest projects.


出生於台北的藝術家鄭婷,擅長將各種藝術形式融合在一起,包括攝影、平面設計、造型設計和裝置藝術。鄭婷運用出人意料的材料和組合,獨特的效果總能讓觀者會心一笑。

在鄭婷的最新作品《植物,你好嗎? 》中,她把自己最具代表性的”植物攝影”和新創作的裝置組合在一起,展示自己對所有植物的熱情。鄭婷用藝術重現身邊的環境,既展現一種荒謬感,又是一種極誠實的表達。我們和鄭婷談了談她的藝術創作和最新作品。

Neocha: Photography is your main means of artistic expression. How did you get started with the medium?

Ting Cheng: I was a fine arts student at the Taipei National University of the Arts, where everyone had their own studios. But I didn’t specialize in illustration, so I didn’t have one. Without a workspace of my own, I had to come up with some other ways to create – methods that didn’t involve having a fixed space. That led to me taking pictures. I would often go out, and when I came across an interesting space, I would find ways to physically interact with the space. In the beginning, my camera was only a tool to document my daily life. I would hand the camera to whomever I was spending time with. I used an Instamatic camera and film that I bought from a flea market; this resulted in most of my photos from around that time being blurry and out of focus.

At the time, I didn’t feel like I was creating anything. I just thought it was fun. After a while, I began accumulating a lot of photos. I only started using a professional-grade digital camera when I came to London and began studying photography. For me, photography is a good way of turning my ideas into something real.


Neocha: 攝影是你的主要藝術表達形式。你是怎麼開始攝影的?

鄭婷:我大學的時候在台北藝術大學念美術系,大家都有自己的工作室。因為我沒有專門在畫畫,所以我沒有畫室,沒有一個自己的空間。所以我想找一個方式我可以創作,又不需要在一個固定的空間,所以我開始拍照。如果出去玩看到有趣的空間,我就會用的身體和環境做互動。一開始相機只是記錄的方法,如果有誰在我身邊就把相機交給他。我用傻瓜機和膠片 — 很爛的從跳蚤市場裡買的相機,所以那時很多照片都是糊的。

那時候我不會覺得在創作,我就覺得好玩,過了一陣子就累积了很多照片。後來我來到倫敦念數碼藝術的研究生,那時候我第一次用比較專業的數碼相機。攝影對我來說還是把想法呈現出來的方式。

Neocha: Your work incorporates photography, graphic design, design styling, and installation art. How did you become interested in all these different mediums?

Ting Cheng: I’m not a storyteller and my mind doesn’t work in a linear fashion. All of my work tends to be quite spontaneous. I have lots of smaller ideas, and I string these together into a bigger concept. Basically, I combine these separate elements together into something more coherent.

I feel like everything is a form of arrangements, such as graphic design and styling. Whether it’s flat or three-dimensional, it’s still arrangements. Medium to medium; people and objects; combining colors; life, death, and everything in between – all of these things involve different forms of arranging things. When I first started to take pictures, everything was on computer monitors. Transferring it from camera to a computer, it was all flat and two-dimensional. But when I’m shooting, I think three-dimensionally because of the environment. Afterwards though, it turns flat, so I have to use different spaces and try to make my work more multifaceted.

My work started focusing on styling while I was still in school, people had a lot more free time and could model for photos. The school was very supportive, and everyone was motivated to help you work on your projects. After graduating, all my friends have busier lives and it’s expensive to rent out a studio. So I started thinking of how I can go solo.

Now I’m thinking of doing short videos, but my content will still be similar to my previous work. The concept of styling will still be evident, and I will combine all of my work. Thinking linearly is difficult for me, but I welcome the challenge. I have to consider different aspects when it comes to videos; I have to think about sound and movement. The more things I have to take into consideration, the more room there is for me to play around. I think it’ll be fun.


Neocha: 你的藝術創作涵蓋攝影、平面設計、造型設計和裝置藝術。你是怎麼對這麼多方面感興趣的?

鄭婷:我不是一個說故事的人,不是一個線性的人。我的東西都是很及時很短的。我有很多小點子,這些小點子放在一起就成為的大的點子,基本上是很多細碎的小元素結合在一起的。

我覺得所有東西對我來說都是在擺設,平面設計、裝置都是一樣。從平面到三維都是擺設:媒材和媒材之間,人和物件之間,活的和死的之間,各種顏色之間。早期開始拍照,所有東西都在電腦螢幕上看,從相機出來到電腦螢幕都是平面的。拍照的時候我會用三維思考,因為在那個環境裡;但拍完變得很平面,所以想要多運用不一樣的空間,希望自己的作品更多元。

還有一個是我的東西變得比較裝置。唸書的時候大家都很閒,大家可以當你的模特,有學校的支持,大家都可以幫你做事情。但畢業之後,你的朋友也都畢業了,大家都很忙,租攝影棚又很貴,所以我想有沒有什麼方式我可以一個人完成的。

現在我想做視頻,但內容也是現在做的東西,也是裝置的形式,就是把我的作品串聯起來。要去線性思考,對我來說很難,但是是有挑戰的事情。視頻要思考到聲音,思考到動態,對我來說就是好玩,讓我思考更多東西,玩的空間更大。

Neocha: Can you tell us about the inspiration and process behind your new series What’s Up Plant? How did you start working with plants?

Ting Cheng: I don’t consider any of my work a part of a series. I make a lot of things, but they’re all different. I usually don’t start off with any plans. I just start doing it, and then I work on it some more. I am definitely interested in creating a series, but I feel like my work are all quite different from one another. The one thing they all have in common is the playfulness. It just happens that I’m interested in plants right now. Whenever I go a new place, I want to do things that will allow me to interact with the environment as a whole. When I was in Taipei, there wasn’t a lot of space, and there wasn’t much greenery. After I moved to London for my studies, I felt there was a lot more plants and parks, even though it’s such a big city. Now I’m living on a boat, I see water everyday, and I’m more in touch with the changing seasons which in turn let me become more in touch with nature. So when I see these plants, I just want to spend time with them.

When you greet plants with a “what’s up?”, you’re no longer alienating them, but treating them like one of us. They are equals, if not even more important. The way you treat plants should be the same as how you treat animals: they require special attention and care. They respond differently depending on how much care you give to them. If you don’t understand their needs, then they will die. I have an illuminated board with a photo of a cactus wearing a sock. What I tried to convey through that is “I’ll help you put on socks, you’re sharp, I’ll protect you.” It’s just like relationships between people, everyone shows love in their own ways, but the good intentions might not benefit the other. Protection is a reoccurring theme in the majority of my work.

 


Neocha: 談談你最新創作《植物,你好嗎?》(What’s Up Plant?)的靈感和過程?為什麼會拿植物創作?

鄭婷:我的作品沒有一個系列,我有很多東西但是都不一樣。我不是先有一個計劃。我先做,然後接著再做。我也想做一系列作品,但是做出來都不太一樣,但是所有作品都有“玩味”的成分在裡面。現在最讓我感興趣的就是植物。每次我到一個新的地方,會想做一些事情和整個環境做互動。因為我在台北的時候,沒有空間,沒有太多綠色。後來來倫敦讀書,倫敦也是大城市,但是有很多綠色,很多公園。現在住在船上,每天都看到水的生活,面對四季,就很直接面對自然。我每天看著這些植物,我想跟他們玩。

你和植物說“你好嗎”,打個招呼,你沒有把植物當成異類,而是和我們一樣,甚至更重要。對待植物就像對待寵物一樣,因為你要照顧他們。你怎麼照顧他們他們怎麼回應你,如果你不了解他們的習性他們會死。我有一個燈箱的照片是仙人掌上有襪子,想表達的意思就是“我幫你穿襪子,你很刺,我來保護你”。就像人和人之間,大家都用自己的方式去示愛,但不一定對對方好。作品裡面有很多保護的成分。

Neocha: Your work often utilizes strange materials. What’s your reasoning behind choosing these materials?

Ting Cheng: My ideas usually result from seeing the material. A lot of the things I use are purchased from thrift stores, and they tend to be common household items. I also like to go through flea markets for cheap things I can use. In What’s Up Plant?, there’s a cactus with a cable tie. One day I realized that they were the same! I don’t know how to describe the delight of that realization, it just felt right.


Neocha: 你的作品運用非常“奇怪”的材料,使用這些材料的原因是什麼?

鄭婷:我通常都是看到材料才有想法,很多東西從都是從十元店買來的很日常的用品,從跳蚤市場上來的很便宜的材料。《植物,你好嗎?》(What’s Up Plant?)裡有一個仙人掌,上面有一個束線帶。有一天我發現“它們一模一樣!”那個驚喜不知道如何形容,就覺得”對了!“

Neocha: Your work contains a lot of humor. What do you consider to be your major influences behind that?

Ting Cheng: Both my parents were joyous and outgoing people. My father loved toys, and he didn’t really feel like a typical dad to me when I was growing up. He would collect toys that didn’t seem to have any value – I didn’t really understand it. Even now, I don’t really feel like I am creating, I still feel like I am just playing around. My lack of understanding is definitely an important aspect of my work. Sometimes when I place something on something else, I don’t really understand why I did it, but it just seems funny to me. So it’s really hard for me to define any meaning behind my work, what it represents. But when I put it all together, I think to myself, “What is this? It’s hilarious.” When I start working on something, I’ll ask people “Do you think this is funny?”, if not then I won’t continue.

I really like Pina Bausch, but it’s not because of her contemporary dance. I feel like she’s amazing at observing life, all the little details, and the relationships between people. She takes all the mundane things in life and amplifies them, and does it repeatedly. I find it very humorous.

I want my work to influence others to look closer at the things that people usually overlook – especially the smallest, most microscopic of things. I want people to smile. My work isn’t a statement or reflection of Taiwanese culture, I actually consider my art to be very simple. It just forces people to take a closer look at the things that’s always been in front of them from a different perspective.


Neocha: 你的作品充滿幽默感,誰對你的啟發最大?

鄭婷:我爸媽都是非常開朗的人。我爸很喜歡玩具,從小到大我不覺得他是爸爸,因為他一直收藏沒有什麼收藏價值的玩具,我不懂。我到現在也不覺得我在創作,我還是覺得我在玩。對我來說很重要的一點是這個東西“我不懂”,這個東西放在那個東西上面,我覺得我不懂,可是我覺​​得它有趣。所以我的作品我很難告訴你背後的意義,這代表什麼。但是我把放它們在一起,我會覺得”這是什麼,好好笑哦“。我做了東西會問身邊的人“這個好不好笑?”,不好笑我不做。

我很喜歡Pina Bausch。我喜歡她不是因為現代舞,而是她很懂得觀察生活,小細節,還有人與人關係之間的關係。她把生活那種很瑣碎微小的東西放大,重複再重複,很有幽默感。

我的東西讓大家去看一些大家沒有發現的事情。其實很微小很微小,讓大家會心一笑。我沒有要去說台灣的文化什麼的,我的東西是很基本很簡單的,讓你用不同的角度去看呈現在你面前的東西。

Websiteting-cheng.com

 

Contributor & Photographer: Shanshan Chen


網站: ting-cheng.com

 

供稿人與攝影師Shanshan Chen

TRIBE

March 7, 2016 2016年3月7日

TRIBE, located in Beijing’s Sanlitun, is a restaurant founded by Yu Min (Yvonne Yu). It’s an all-organic restaurant, a rarity in the city. Operating with the concept of “you are what you eat, drink, breathe.” This sleek and modern restaurant uses only the freshest ingredients for all of their dishes, evident from their ever-changing menu that varies based on the season. TRIBE offers delicious and all-organic food, alongside a wide selection of tasty beverages. Yvonne, born in Sichuan, still holds a nostalgic fondness for the food she grew up with and finds inspiration in those familiar flavors from her childhood. This nostalgia carries over to the restaurant, where they cook up reimagined, healthier versions of traditional Sichuan dishes.


TRIBE由创意人余敏(Yvonne Yu)女士开设于北京三里屯,是京城少有的有机食品餐厅之一。秉承着”you are what you eat, drink, breathe”,从有机农产品,到各类饮品,在这个现代简洁的餐厅里,有着新鲜健康的当季菜品和每一季不同的菜式。因为来自四川的Yvonne对家乡菜的念念不忘,这里甚至有着用TRIBE的方式改进的四川菜。

“Oat noodles, Sichuan chicken salad – these are some of the menu items based around traditional Sichuan dishes, but done in a healthier manner. For all of our dishes, we try to use vegetables from the current season, less cooking, and no frying. We try to preserve all possible nutrients in every dish, while also factoring in the amount protein and carbohydrates. We want each single one of our dishes to be nutritionally balanced,” Yvonne tells us. In the ten years that she’s spent in Beijing, she has seen the city’s culinary scene flourish and become more and more creative. When it comes to better dining choices, the gap between Beijing and other metropolitan cities have shrunk, but there’s still a long way to go.


“筱面,四川鸡肉沙拉,我们都是用四川菜改的,用健康方法来做。所有的菜我们尽量用当季的菜,少烹饪,不油炸。尽量每一道菜有更多的营养,保证有蛋白质,有碳水化合物……做到营养均衡。” Yvonne说。生活在北京的十多年里,她看到这座城市有了更多的新式创意食物。她说北京和世界上其他大城市的距离正在缩小,但是他们仍然面对着巨大的挑战。

It is a challenging task running an all-organic restaurant in this vast expanse of traditional restaurants that most people are accustomed to. TRIBE has to change people’s preconceived notions of all-organic food, first by increasing people’s understanding of the benefits from eating nutritionally balanced meals, and then getting them more used to food with a lighter taste. Besides their regularly hosted seminars, TRIBE also spreads awareness through their WeChat account. “To be honest, everyone already knows that there are benefits to eating organic food, but they feel like it’s meaningless in Beijing,” says Yvonne. “It’s impossible to improve the air quality here anytime soon, but people can still choose to use naturally grown ingredients. When there’s more demand for these types of ingredients, it will encourage more farms to employ organic methods. Then at the same time, it will draw more attention to the importance of a healthy environment. Step by step, we can slowly change people’s perspectives and eventually make positive changes to the environment.”


在传统餐厅的天下做这样一家餐厅的挑战,必然是改变人们的固有观念。让人们对所谓“清淡口味”的习惯,对营养均衡的正确理解,都是TRIBE需要去做的。除了不定期举办seminar,TRIBE也通过微信平台推广。“其实大家都知道吃有机食品有好处,可是觉得在北京就没有意义。” Yvonne说,“你不可能一时半会儿间改变空气,但是你至少可以选择用自然方式种植的食材。对这些食材的更多使用,一方面能鼓励农场用自然方法种植,另一方面也能唤起更多人对健康生活环境的关注。从而一步步改变更多人的看法,改变环境。”

Before founding TRIBE in 2014, Yvonne ran her own brand design company. But her ongoing quest for thoughtfully prepared cuisine and a healthier lifestyle led to the creation of TRIBE. Coming from a creative background, she recalls the tightly knit sense of community that workshops can offer. With that in mind, TRIBE often hosts many different events: themed runs with participants wearing Halloween costumes; yoga classes; face-to-face lessons with hat designers; and even having dinner with candlemakers to learn how to make scented candles.


在2014年开设TRIBE之前,Yvonne经营着自己的品牌设计公司。她对美食和健康的追求是TRIBE成立的原因。但是自己的创意人背景,让她仍不忘记以workshop的方式与整个创意社区保持紧密的联系。在这里,你更可以换上万圣节戏服一起参加趣味跑步,体验瑜伽;可以有机会和帽饰设计师面对面学习时尚,或者和香薰蜡烛制作师共进晚餐并尝试做出自己的蜡烛……

“From paying more attention to personal health, to being more aware about our environment. Just individuals doing these things aren’t enough, we need entire communities to work towards these goals for it to be meaningful.” Yvonne’s conviction carries over to TRIBE’s entire mentality. Recently, she opened TRIBE Nutrition at the SOHO in Sanlitun. This new store of hers is focused around tailoring nutritionally balanced meals for fitness enthusiasts. Furthermore, their new store in Lido will be opening just around the corner. Many guest chefs will be collaborating with this store, and the larger space will be also be able to host live performances, as well as more frequent workshop sessions. TRIBE is a perfect example of successfully balancing creativity and entrepreneurship. It isn’t just a restaurant – the very name itself represents the power of a group of like-minded people coming together in passionate pursuit of a common goal.


“从关注自己自身的健康,去提倡各位关注环境问题。不只个人,更要有社区的发展,这才是有意义的。”这正是Yvonne所坚信的,也是TRIBE所坚信的。最近TRIBE在三里屯SOHO开设了TRIBE Nutrition,为健身人士量身定制营养餐。此外丽都新店也开张在即,届时将有与不同嘉宾厨师的合作,有更大的场地以提供现场音乐表演,以及更为频繁的workshop。TRIBE正在努力做着商业和创意的平衡。 正如这间餐厅的名字一样,TRIBE不只是一家餐厅,更似一个将拥有同样追求和生活热情的人群聚集一起的力量。

Address:
Hongjie Mansion, Bldg 3, 1F, South Entrance
2 Workers’ Stadium E. Road (Workers’ Stadium East Entrance)
Chaoyang District, Beijing
People’s Republic of China

Websitetribeorganic.com
WeChat: tribeorganic

 

Contributors: Banny Wang, Eric Zhang
Photographer: Banny Wang


地址:
中国
北京市朝阳区
工体东路2号中国红街大厦3号楼1楼入口南侧
(工人体育场东门)

网站tribeorganic.com
微信: tribeorganic

 

供稿人: Banny Wang, Eric Zhang
摄影师: Banny Wang

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A Short Tour of Manila

March 3, 2016 2016年3月3日

In her photography, Catherine Ramos (aka Kleng Ramos) likes to capture the life, charm, energy and the colors of the everyday scenarios that she encounters in the streets of the Philippines, or wherever she goes to travel. She first started shooting in high school with a simple point and shoot digital camera, and ever since then she gets a thrill in capturing things that are rarely seen.


Sa kanyang potograpya, gusto ni Catherine Ramos (na kilala rin bilang Kleng Ramos) na kumuha ng larawan ng buhay, alindog, enerhiya at  mga kulay ng araw-araw na senaryo na nakakasalubong niya sa mga lansangan ng Pilipinas, o saan man siya maglakbay. Nagsimula siyang kumuha ng larawan noong siya ay nasa mataas na paaralan na may simple point at shoot digital camera, at simula noon ay nakakuha siya ng kagalakan sa pagkuha ng larawan ng mga bagay na pambihirang makita.

When asked about Manila, her home city, Catherine tells us, “What I like the most in this city is that there’s always something going on here. This city is busy, yet so lively.” For her, there are always new hang-out places, dining and drinking places pop up constantly, and there never seem to be a shortage of events. The locals in Manila also really know how to have fun and be hospitable.


Nang tanungin siya tungkol sa Maynila na kanyang tahanang lungsod, ikinuwento sa amin ni Catherine na, “Ang pinakagusto ko sa lungsod na ito ay laging mayroong kakaiba dito. Ang lungsod na ito ay abala ngunit buhay na buhay.” Para sa kanya, laging maraming lugar na pasyalan, kainan at inumang lugar na patuloy na lumalabas, at waring hindi kailanman nauubusan ng mga pagdiriwang. Alam din ng mga tao sa Maynila kung paano magsaya at maging magiliw sa panauhin.

Catherine comes from San Juan City, Metro Manila. This is the city that she loves the most and is most familiar with. This part of Manila offers many little surprises to visitors, from cool neighborhood street art to delicious food served in its small local restaurants. While not exactly a pedestrian city, she tells us Manila is rapidly making improvements to make the city more walkable and safer.


Si Catherine ay nagmula sa Lungsod ng San Juan, Kalakhang Maynila. Ito ang lungsod na pinaka gustong-gusto niya at pinaka pamilyar sa kanya. Ang bahagi ng Maynilang ito ay nag-aalok ng maraming maliliit na sorpresa sa mga bisita mula sa magagandang sining sa kalsada ng lugar hanggang sa masasarap na inihahaing pagkain sa maliliit na lokal na restawran dito. Habang hindi pa eksaktong lungsod ng mga taong naglalakad, sinabi niya na mabilis na nagkakaroon ng mga pagbabago ang Maynila para malakaran nang ligtas ang lungsod.

“If you are into thrift shops or you would like to shop for vintage and artsy stuff,” Catherine tells us, “you can go to Cubao X, which is located in Cubao-Quezon City, or the Future Market in Manila.” If you want to check it out, Catherine advises that Future Market only happens on Saturdays. At the thrift stores in Cubao X, you can find used clothing, shoes, vintage memorabilias, old cameras, watches, furnitures, vinyl records, books and much more.


“Kung ikaw ay mahilig mamili sa mga ukay-ukay o gusto mong mamili ng antigo at masining na kagamitan,” sinabi sa amin ni Catherine na, “maaari kang magpunta sa Cubao X, na matatagpuan sa Cubao-Lungsod ng Quezon, o sa Future Market sa Maynila.” Kung gusto mong mamili, ipinapayo ni Catherine na ang Future Market  ay nagaganap lamang tuwing Sabado. Sa mga ukay-ukay sa Cubao X, makikita mo ang mga nagamit nang kasuotan, sapatos, antigong mga palamuti, lumang kamera, relo, muwebles, vinyl records, aklat at marami pang iba.

If you want to eat and have a good variety of choices, Catherine recommends that you try the Greenfield Weekend Market on Shaw Boulevard in Mandaluyong City. “A lot of food stalls are set up there during the weekends. Apart from that, artwork and vintage finds could also be bought there,” she says. Sometimes, it is possible to catch some musical performances from local bands while enjoying your food at this park.


Kung gusto mong kumain at magkaroon ng maraming pagpipilian, inirerekomenda ni Catherine na subukan mo ang Greenfield Weekend Market sa Shaw Boulevard sa Lungsod ng Mandaluyong. “Maraming puwesto ng pagkain doon tuwing huling linggo. Bukod doon, mabibili rin ang mga gawang-sining at antigo,” kuwento niya. Minsan, maaaring makakita ng ilang musikang pagtatanghal mula sa mga lokal na banda habang kumakain sa parkeng ito.

“If you would like to watch local bands, be it mainstream or indie,” Catherine says, “I suggest that you go to Saguijo and B-Side which are located in Makati City, or Route 196 which is located in Quezon City.” For contemporary art, Catherine highly recommends the Pinto Art Museum in Antipolo City, Rizal. While it is actually just outside of Manila, the museum is a very famous destination for art enthusiasts.


“Kung gusto mong manood ng mga lokal na banda, mapa- mainstream o indie,” kuwento ni Catherine, “Iminumungkahi ko na magpunta ka sa Saguijo at B-Side na matatagpuan sa Lungsod ng Makati, o Route 196 na matatagpuan sa Lungsod ng Quezon.”Para sa mga napapanahong sining, higit na inirerekomenda ni Catherine ang Pinto Art Museum sa Lungsod ng Antipolo sa Rizal. Habang sa katunayan, ito ay nasa labas ng Maynila, ang museo ay napakasikat na destinasyon para sa mga tagahanga ng sining.

“Nowadays,” Catherine says, “people here in Manila are starting to favor more local cafes, even though famous coffee chains could be found in almost every street – especially around the busy areas of Manila.” To try the local brews, she recommends checking out Local Edition, Yardstick and Commune, which are located in Makati City.


“Sa kasalukuyan,” kuwento ni Catherine, “ang mga tao dito sa Maynila ay nagsisimulang higit na paboran ang mga lokal na kapehan, kahit na ang mga kilalang tindahan ng kape ay matatagpuan sa halos lahat ng kalsada– lalo na sa buong abalang lugar ng Maynila.” Para subukan ang lokal na paggawa ng kape, inirekomenda niya na magpunta sa Local Edition, Yardstick at Commune, na matatagpuan sa Lungsod ng Makati.

As a street photographer, Ramos has come across a lot of different encounters while out shooting. There was one time when she approached a homeless woman to ask if she could take a portrait of her. “Despite the hardships that the woman obviously had been through, I was amazed how excited and happy she was when I asked her to be photographed,” Catherine says, “That encounter made me realize a lot of things and I can say that it was the most memorable experience I had so far while shooting the streets of Manila.”


Bilang litratista ng lansangan, naranasan ni Ramos ang maraming iba’t ibang hamon habang kumukuha ng larawan. Isang beses nang lumapit siya sa babaeng walang tahanan para hilingin kung maaari siyang makakuha ng kanyang litrato. “Sa kabila ng kahirapan na halatang pinagdaraanan ng babae, humanga ako kung gaano siya kasabik at kasaya nang hilingin ko na kunan siya ng litrato,” kuwento ni Catherine, “Ang karanasang iyon ay nagmulat sa akin sa maraming bagay at masasabi ko na ito ang pinaka hindi malilimutang karanasan na mayroon ako habang kumukuha ng larawan sa mga lansangan ng Maynila.”

Website: triplekleng.blogspot.com
VSCO Gridvsco.co/klengramos

 

Contributor: Leon Yan
Photographer: Kleng Ramos


Website: triplekleng.blogspot.com
VSCO Grid: vsco.co/klengramos

 

Kontribyutor: Leon Yan
Litratista: Kleng Ramos