(From left to right) UEM Sunrise Chief Executive Officer, Sufian Abdullah; Managing Director of Yayasan Hasanah, Dato’ Shahira Ahmed Bazari; Minister of Finance, YB Senator Tengku Datuk Seri Utama Zafrul bin Tengku Abdul Aziz; Chairman of Yayasan Hasanah, Tan Sri Md Nor Yusof; and Advisor and curator of Fergana Art, Jaafar Ismail posed for a group photo, each holding the exhibition catalogue after the Minister officiated the event. Image from: UEM Sunrise

Publika Shopping Gallery, together with Fergana Art, organised a Covid-19-themed art exhibition titled “Pemulihan:Pembaharuan”, showcasing the extent of the impact of the Movement Control Order and the Covid-19 pandemic to human lives, their livelihoods and the communities over the past 20 months in Malaysia.

The exhibition was officiated by Minister of Finance, YB Senator Tengku Datuk Seri Utama Zafrul bin Tengku Abdul Aziz. It consisted of paintings, prints, videos, photography, sculptures, objects, installations, essays, poems, stories, visual diaries and personal notes. The collection forms historic visual and textual responses to the Covid-19 pandemic.

UEM Sunrise through its flagship creative retail space, Publika Shopping Gallery, is one of the main sponsors of the exhibition and wishes to provide a platform to support the Malaysian creative industry as well as make arts accessible to the public.

Winners from the Balai Seni Negara bi-annual competition, Bakat Muda Sezaman; Samsudin Wahab, Haslin Ismail and Fuad Arif, and Wong Hoy Cheong are among the 89 artists, photographers and writers who are participating in the exhibition. Their past works were also displayed and acquired by Balai Seni Negara, the Guggenheim and other institutions for their permanent collection. An artists collective from Sabah, Pangrok Sulap is also showcasing their works in the exhibition. They are actively involved in community-based projects, aiding students in rural schools and orphanages.

Then there is Digit Collective, a group of individuals from diverse technical backgrounds, comprising visual artists, information and computing technologists, architectural and designing academics, a landscape designer and environmentalist, a data miner and knowledge engineers.

The exhibition also includes participants from various mainstream and online media photographers including The Biddy’s, a collective of emerging photojournalists and writers who have put their lives at risk to chronicle the pandemic.

The VIPs viewed and pondered the collections in White Box, which consists of visual and textual responses to the Covid-19 pandemic in various kinds of creative mediums. Image from: UEM Sunrise

“This extraordinary exhibition is a chronicle of that which reminds us of the struggles, sacrifices and losses that we have endured over the past 20 months; and a demonstration of the human spirit which will also inspire our hope for recovery and renewal,” said UEM Sunrise Chief Executive Officer, Sufian Abdullah.

“UEM Sunrise through Publika will continue to provide a beacon and support the Malaysian creative industry through platforms such as MAP@Publika,” he added.

Fergana Art also expressed gratitude to UEM Sunrise Berhad and Publika Shopping Gallery for offering the opportunity and management support in undertaking the project.

Advisor and curator of Fergana Art, Jaafar Ismail said that creative artists such as visual artists, thespians, filmmakers, journalists and writers have documented Malaysia’s Covid-19 chronicle for the past 20 months.

“Our creative artists have provided a window into the realities of the lives affected by Covid-19. With many sectors as well as our borders reopening, our theme for this year’s exhibition emphasises on the nation’s road towards recovery. We are grateful to Publika as well as UEM Sunrise for allowing us to continue our efforts in showcasing Malaysia’s response towards Covid-19,” he said.

The “Pemulihan:Pembaharuan” exhibition is a continuation of the exhibition themed “Bridging The Distance: Making Us Stronger” held in June last year. Also jointly organised by Publika and Fergana Art, it focused on pandemic containment and was meant as a tribute to the medical and security frontliners.

Pemulihan:Pembaharuan” is also sponsored and supported by Yayasan Hasanah and Balai Seni Negara.

Event: “Pemulihan:Pembaharuan” exhibition
Date: 15 November - 5 December 2021
Time: 10am to 10pm
Venue: The Gallery and White Box, MAP@Publika

(30 November 2021)