Tuesday, 18 October 2011

News | The newly opened University of Malaya Art Gallery




The University of Malaya has recently opened UMAG (University of Malaya Art Gallery), an initiative and vision of its Vice Chancellor, Tan Sri Dr Ghauth Jasmon. The official launch is planned sometime early next year along with its detailed programmes, but a brochure foreshadows its purpose and intent: UMAG will house a collection of modern art works, including those by Syed Ahmad Jamal, Latiff Mohidin, Ibrahim Hussein, Chen Wen Hsi and MF Hussain. Many, particularly the latter, may be traced back to their pre-separation origins at the former University of Malaya, Singapore, in the 1950s and 1960s. Currently the University of Malaya also administers Museum of Asian Art, which manages the collection. While we wait for further news, the formation of Gallery will certainly be an opportunity to coordinate and consolidate strategic directions of the two entities.


Brochure Cover - Featuring an Image of the Chancellory Building

Brochure Back Cover - Map and Contacts


Given the significance of its collections and its history/histories, UMAG, located at Chancellory Building, is strategically and symbolically positioned as the University's cultural legacy. Its facilities include miniature paintings gallery, audio-visual gallery, artist's studio, reference and research rooms, and a cafe. The mission of the UMAG is marked by a sense of clarity and confidence; "to make the visual arts an essential part of the experience of all University of Malaya community, to advance knowledge of art and culture, to serve as a world-class destination for members of the national ad international communities, and ... as a public gateway to the University's intellectual resource." The mission is to be supported by collections, exhibitions and public programmes, aimed at a range of audiences "from the uninitiated to the expert". A key initiative is the reintroduction of a Resident Artists Programme which provides fellowships to Malaysian artists. Among the four appointed is printmaker Juhari Said.

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