Sokong Team
Tue May 28 2024

A Decade of Artistic Insights: Gan Siong King's My Video Making Practice

Arts & Culture
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Organised in conjunction with Five Arts Centre’s 40th anniversary, My Video Making Practice (MVMP) is a unique mashup event combining an artist talk, a screening, and a dialogue with invited guests by Gan Siong King - one of Malaysia’s most original contemporary artists.

In MVMP (83 minutes), Gan expands his distinctive, research-driven practice by remixing 7 selected videos of Malaysian artists at work which he has made in the past decade. In the process, the artist turns the lens and editing machine onto his own video-making practice, combining his own personal materials and memories with the videos made previously – to reflect critically and humorously on the pleasures and pressures of making art in Malaysia, and growing up in the 1990s.

MVMP is also conceived as a not-for-profit community engagement project to facilitate conversations on art and artmaking. After each of the 8 screenings, there will be dialogue sessions between Gan with invited guests – including with different generations of Five Arts Centre members.

These dialogues will touch on the processes of artmaking; collaboration; the relationship between art, culture, education, and society; and how things have changed since the 1990s – a seminal decade in Malaysian history.


Dates & Time: 20-23 & 27-30 June 2023, 8.00pm

Venue: Five Arts Centre studio, GMBB KL

Ticket Price: RM30 (30% concessions available for student groups of 10 persons & above – please Whatsapp +6018-202 8827)

Ticket available at:

Background to this staging of My Video Making Practice

Over the past decade, Gan Siong King has quietly made an impressive and important series of video essays featuring Malaysian artists at work. These include portraits of contemporary Chinese calligrapher Ong Chia Koon, graphic designer, box camera photographer and cycling activist Jeffrey Lim, electric guitar amplifier maker Nik Shazwan, the people involved in filmmaker Liew Seng Tat’s 2007 feature film Flower in the Pocket, and musician Takahara Suiko – amongst others. Taken as a suite, these video essays provide intimate insights into the artists’ work, lives and motivations, bringing to light the pleasures and pressures of making art in Malaysia. In these works, a parallel text emerges from Gan’s intense, playful curiosity into the very tools and processes that are at play in their work – what is involved in the making of a map; how tube-based amplifiers function – expanding the observations and conversations he has with artists into unexpected territories.

In MVMP, Gan turns the lens (or more appropriately, the editing machine) onto his own video-making practice, remixing the videos he has previously made with his own personal materials – to reflect critically on his own work, motivations and approaches.

MVMP has been invited to be presented in Singapore and Bandung, but thus far, has only been staged in Malaysia to limited audiences at the SeaShorts Festival 2022 at Multimedia University, as well as at Sunway University. Five Arts Centre believe it deserves a much wider audience in Malaysia.


Five Arts Centre is staging MVMP as the project strongly addresses the questions being foregrounded in its 40th year in 2024.

Eschewing big productions or a 'greatest hits' retrospective celebration typical of such milestones, Five Arts Centre has instead decided to focus on exploring, highlighting, and sharing artmaking processes. To this end, workshops by Vancouver-based dance artist Lee Su-Feh, dramaturg and educator Charlene Rajendran, and Gan’s MVMP have been programmed – all sitting in parallel with this trajectory of artists opening up their practice and methodologies and engaging in dialogue with fellow arts practitioners.

An important factor in this trajectory is also friendship. Gan has worked with Five Arts Centre several times over the years, particularly between the late 1990s to the mid-2000s, and there is excitement to reconnect with him and his practice after 20 years via the MVMP event.


About Gan Siong King

Gan is a Malaysian artist who has been making paintings since the 1990s and videos since 2009. His work tries to unpack and rearrange “expectations,” probing art and its capacity for meaning-making. His video essays are often portraits of others and of himself, while his painting practice is mostly invested in testing its own parameters. In recent years, he has included writing and exhibition-making as part of his practice, working across these various formats as a bridge for communication and collaboration with others.

He has participated in residencies and exhibitions all around the world. His most recent exhibitions were My Video Making Practice at Singapore Art Museum, Singapore, and All the Time I Pray to Buddha, I Keep on Killing Mosquitoes, at PJPAC, Malaysia, both in 2022. The latter exhibition was a screening of two videos made during his residency at Koganecho Bazaar, Yokohama, Japan, in 2020. Prior to that, other notable solo exhibitions (all in Kuala Lumpur) are All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace at A+ Works of Art in 2019; Meeting People is Easy at the artist’s studio in 2017; The Horror, The Horror at APW in 2015; and The Pleasures of Odds & Ends at Feeka in 2014. His works have been included in the Asian Art Biennial, Taichung (2021); Biennale Jogja XV – Equator #5, Yogyakarta (2019); and ILHAM Contemporary Forum, Kuala Lumpur (2017).

by malaysiakini

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