Dec 29, 2013

Penang Street Art... the way I see it...

Being born a Penangite.. I have not been back to Penang in ages and so this trip, I left my little daughter behind and decided to go back to Penang as a tourist would and see Penang in a different way. And so I did.. It was fun. I am not sure if I walked so much in my life... I probably did but this was under a blazing sun and I got half sunburnt from just going around on foot.... Anyway, these are the street arts from various artists I came across.... There are actually so many beautiful street arts in Penang now and hard to see them all in just a matter of hours.

 The Awaiting Trishaw Paddler is a giant mural that graces the wall of a building on Penang Road (towards Bayview City Hotel , E&O), Penang.  
The Awaiting Trishaw Paddler mural was one of those painted by Lithuanian artist Ernest Zacharevic, as part of the Mirrors George Town project. It measures 15.2 m by 15.2 m, and is probably the largest of the murals painted by Zacharevic in George Town.

Little Girl in Blue is a giant mural on the wall on Muntri Street, facing the compound of the Penang Goldsmith Association. The mural is the work of Lithuania-born artist Ernest Zacharevic. It was painting as part of the street art for the 2012 George Town Festival.
"The Girl in Blue" shows a little girl lifting herself up on both hands perched over the two windows.
Ting Ting Thong is a steel-rod sculpture located along Seck Chuan Lane, in George Town Penang. It is created by Sculpture at Work for the Penang Island Municipal Council (MPPP), based on caricature of local cartoonist Baba Chuah.
The "Ting Ting Thong" sculpture celebrates a local delicacy from time past, when itinerant hawkers would go street by street to peddle rock candy. These candies appealed to children who will often congregate whenever they hear the rock candyman coming. He is often called the "ting ting thong", an onomatopoeia for the sound made by his chisel breaking the hard-as-rock candy.

 The "Kandar" Sculpture is the second steel-rod sculpture to be installed on Ah Quee Street in George Town, Penang. It celebrates nasi kandar, a Tamil Muslim rice meal that was originally sold in itinerant manner on the street. The name kandar refers to the pole used to carry the food items about. (pic above and below)

The hungry dog mural can be found , opposite the real Bruce Lee would never do this mural... behind a building at Ah Quee Street, George Town (or more specifically, behind the ‘motorcyclist boy mural‘ and ‘dying art‘ building).

The Bruce Lee Cat Mural, officially called The Real Bruce Lee Would Never Do This, is the third of twelve cat murals painted by ASA, Artists for Stray Animals, for the 101 Lost Kittens project. It shows two stray cats being delivered a kick from the kungfu legend, one of which was sent flying.
The mural was not intended for people to emulate, but rather to remind the public to treat the stray cats well. A notice is placed under it stating its title in three languages, Malay, English and Chinese, saying that the real Bruce Lee never did this to cats.

 "Boy on a Bike" is painted on the sidedoor of a shophouse along Ah Quee Street. It shows a boy hanging out on his motorcycle as he watches the pedestrian traffic passing by along the street. The mural is immediately to the right of another Zacharevic piece, "Little Boy with Pet Dinosaur" which is however sadly fading away...

 The "Double Role" Sculpture is a steel-rod sculpture installed on a wall on Chulia Street Ghaut, in George Town, Penang. This is one of the steel-rod sculptures installed in February, 2013. Located near the junction with Beach Street, it depicts a Punjabi man morphing between a role as policeman and another as firefighter. A red fire hose barrel completes the sculpture.

 Yeoh Only is a steel-rod sculpture installed on the wall of Yeoh Kongsi, along Chulia Street Ghaut, George Town. It celebrates the Yeoh clan association which was founded in 1836 to look into the welfare of the newly arrived Yeoh clansmen.
The "Yeoh Only" Sculpture depicts a band of newly arrived immigrants identifying themselves to the host receiving them.

 The "Property" sculpture celebrates the extension of the shoreline from Beach Street to Weld Quay, creating additional space the construction of warehouses, stores and other commercial properties. It also serves as a reminder that land reclamation has been ongoing in Penang since the late 19th century.
One of the reason for the land reclamation was that sailing ships (as represented by the junk in the picture) was being phased out at that time with the introduction of steam ships that require deeper harbour. On the left side of the picture is an Indian coolie posting a signage which alas, misspelled "reclamation".
 Fortune Cat is the second of twelve cat murals under the 101 Lost Kittens project. Officially called "Love Me Like Your Fortune Cat", it was painted by the team of artists calling themselves ASA, or Artists for Stray Animals.
The Fortune Cat Mural depicts a cat gazing at a group of "fortune cats", perhaps pondering why they have better luck than him. Fortune cats are cat dolls that are often found in Japanese and Taiwanese restaurants, particularly near the cash register, beckoning patrons into the shop. Such dolls, called maneki-neko in Japanese, are believed by shopkeepers to bring good business. In this mural, the Fortune Cats are depicted in stencil while the cat as a painted artwork.

The 102nd Cat Mural is an additional cat mural that was added to the streets of George Town, Penang. Completed on 5 July, 2013, it graces a wall along Armenian Street Ghaut, across the road from the Skippy mural and a short distance from the Fortune Cat mural.
The 102nd Cat Mural mural is painted on the wall in front of a bicycle-rental shop. The only blue cat mural, it serves as a postscript to the 101 Lost Kittens project.

"Skippy", or in full, "Skippy Comes to Penang", and often called simply as the Giant Cat Mural, is part a project called 101 Lost Kittens, the work of a group of artists which calls themselves ASA, or Artists for Stray Animals. It comprises Tang Yeok Khang of Bukit Mertajam, Natthaton Muangkliang of Thailand and Louise Low of Kuala Lumpur.
The Giant Cat mural is one of the murals being painted to create awareness of the need to protect animals and get people to foster a love for pets. 

The Giant Rat Mural is an accompanying artwork to the Giant Cat Mural along Armenian Street Ghaut, in George Town, Penang. The rat mural was in fact created by an anonymous artist.
The Giant Rat Mural depicts a giant rat, not unlike Remy from Ratatoille. He appears to be hiding around the corner, away from the pussy cat on the adjoining wall. Both can be viewed together as one, showing that the two are almost eyeing each other.

 Please Care & Bathe Me (working title: "Two Kittens in a Tub") is the fourth mural painted by the ASA (Artists for Stray Animals) team for the 101 Lost Kittens project. It depicts two rather bushy kittens, looking pensive, as they started out of a line-design tube. The mural is painted on a yellow wall.

 Little Children on a Bicycle is a mural on the wall of a shophouse on Armenian StreetGeorge Town. It is one of the two murals along that street painted by London-trained artist Ernest Zacharevic, in conjunction with the 2012 George Town Festival. It depicts a little girl taking her younger brother on a bicycle ride. The joy in their faces echoes down the street, providing a ray of cheer and adding character to Armenian Street.

 I Can Help Catch Rats is the 10th of eleven pieces of art created for the 101 Lost Kittens project. The mural is painted on the wall of an alleyway, which is one of the branches of Soo Hong Lane, by a group of artists calling themselves ASA (Artists for Stray Animals).
"I Can Help Catch Rats" mural depicts a cat prancing after a rat, or perhaps mouse. It is painted against three primary colours, yellow, red and blue, with the cat and rat occupying the red circle. The mural is intended to generate a desire among the locals to keep cats as pets, as they bring along the benefit of keeping down household rodents.

 Wo Ai Nee Chinese Malay Indian is a wall mural in George Town, Penang. It graces the side wall of the I-Box Museum of Glass along Armenian Street. The mural was done in stages and was completed around September, 2013. It depicts three girls, a Chinese, a Malay and an Indian, dressed in exquisite finery. The title of the mural means "I love you, Chinese, Malay and Indian".

 Too Narrow is a Sculpture at Work sculpture erected at Soo Hong LaneGeorge Town, Penang. It is on the wall near the junction with Armenian Street. The sculpture depicts a boisterous ricksaw man breaking away from his rickshaw, which is too wide to enter the lane, and the ricksaw man continued down the lane, leaving his passengers behind.

Too Narrow is a caricature by cartoonist Tang Mun Kian to provide an amusing insight into the characteristic of Soo Hong Lane.

 The Head of the Lion , Armenien Street  just in front of the i-Box Museum of Glass's entrance.

 Cartoon magic on the panels of a metal shop-front door in the old town along Armenian Street too...
 Procession is a steel-rod sculpture on Armenian Street, George Town. If you are coming from the junction with Cannon and Pitt Streets, it is on the wall to your left, after the big "Old Man" mural by Ernest Zacharevic. The sculpture depicts the Grand Float Procession held in 1926 to celebrate the birthday of Tua Pek Kong. As it was the Year of the Tiger, effigies of the tiger was carried through the streets (accompanied by the second Chingay procession in George Town). Observing the procession is a British tourist who remembers the last tiger shot in 1930 (an impossibility as the Tua Pek Kong Grand Procession actually took place in 1926).
The caricature was drawn by local cartoonist Tang Mun Kian and depicted as a steel-rod sculpture by Sculpture at Work.

 The "Then & Now" Sculpture is a steel-rod sculpture on a wall in Armenian Street.

Reaching Up is a mural painted on a wall along Cannon StreetGeorge Town.
"Reaching Up" depicts a little boy reaching for a hole in the wall. He appears to be standing on a chair and inching himself as high as he could reach like he is reading to peek in somewhere. The locals call him the "budak mengendap" or peekaboo kid. 

The painting was created by Ernest Zacharevic in conjunction with the 2012 George Town Festival. Since its completion, it has grown increasing number of visitors coming to take photos with it.

For a map of these street art (and more) please click HERE

For more street art of Penang, please see here too :


  1. THanks for the photos

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  3. Thanks for the link to the article "Penang Street Art: The Way I See It" on Miera Nadhirah's blog. This article provides a fascinating look at street art in Penang and how street art can inspire and transform the urban environment. When it comes to transformation and inspiration through art, this company can be your trusted partner. They specialize in wall painting and will help you freshen up your home with a professional touch.


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