VCKA

Visual Collections of Kampung Artifacts (VCKA): A Case Study of Kampung in Pulau Pinang

Lead Researcher

Dr. Zainurul Aniza A. Rahman

School of Arts, Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM)

zainurulrahman@gmail.com / zainurulrahman@usm.my

 

Introduction of the project

In the process of developing Malaysia many kampung (villages) in several capital cities of Malaysia have been demolished or moved to different places. This is due to many reasons and needs of the states and national interest in order to develop the country. Through this process of demolishing or moving the kampung, beside many lost, not many so far have been documented and captured visually as record for academic or future references. This is a common scenario happening in Malaysia. This project aims to track the kampung that have potential to be ‘moved’ or to ‘be developed’ and will conduct several processes of documentation through visual collection. These visual collections will not only include photography, but also sketches and videos of the houses, the surroundings, the interiors of the house, the environments (if possible) and also the artifacts that can closely be related with kampung and the community of kampung. This project will start within the northern area of Peninsular Malaysia, covering the states of Penang, and possibly depending on the situation and the nature of the project it will covers the other northern states such as Kedah and Perlis.

Research Challenge

The problems that was discovered through the process of documenting the visuals of the selected kampung (village) around Penang is that it is not easy to enter a kampung without a guide or introducer. Most of these kampung are at stakes due to the rapid urbanization of the popular areas in Penang Island. Some kampung such as Kampung Batu Maung, Kampung Batu Uban, Kampung Binjal, Kampung Buah Pala, Kampung Dalca, Kampung Dodol, Kampung Gajah, Kampung Genting, Kampung Lima Kongsi, Kampung Makam, Kampung Melayu, Kampung Nelayan, Kampung Padang Benggali and Kampung Pisang have already affected (Nur Adila, Bernama: 2016). Most of these kampungs are facing threats of disappearing as the Penang Island is in the rapid process of positioning itself as the urban states. What we discovered is that all the reintroduction of a new areas or some sort if new modern urban village there are very limited consideration given to the issues on how to sustain the kampung lifestyles and it residences. This is what this project trying to achieve not so much in the sustaining the kampung but in collecting the visual artifacts of the kampung so that the kampung lifestyle can be referred to in future, to understand what is the kampung livelihood, and hopefully to be able to extract the values of kampung living in future through these visual collections of kampung artifacts project.

With the given situations, most kampung residences are in fear and reluctant to provide information or supports to assist this research, as we (the research team) are the outsiders to the kampung people. Therefore, it is necessary to have a guide or introducer to be the middle person to introduce the research team to the kampung and its residences. In order to do this, we have appointed an assistant of En. Mohamad Shukri Hassan, one of the local residences in Penang and have lots of oral histories to share with us. With his existence in the visit, the process of documentation and interviews with the local kampung residences became easier. His main role is to introduce the research team to the kampung residences or house owner, and assist the team in visual research and photography. Beside that his roles are also to ensure any conflict of interest to be identified and handle appropriately, as he has the connection and knows the people in the kampung.

Progress in VCKA Research Project

Stage 1 – Exploring Kampung

Closeby to USM areas

Stage 2 – Identifying Kampung & Documenting

Identifying kampungs

Stage 3 – Continue Identifying Kampung & Documenting

Moving towards visiting kampung around the city center

Moved

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