KUALA LUMPUR: Untold stories that made Malaysia what it is today will come to light during a unique exhibition at national heritage site Carcosa and Seri Negara here, a day after the country celebrates its 60th Independence Day.
The month-long “Jalan Merdeka: traversing the routes to Merdeka” exhibition, which will kick off on Sept 1, is an inaugural project of the Asian Heritage Museum (AHM), which recently received tenancy at Carcosa Seri Negara.
Asian Heritage Council Sdn Bhd chairman and lead curator Tunku Zain Al-‘Abidin Tuanku Muhriz said the exhibition, which was curated by a team of historians, activists and filmmakers, as well as an architect and a musician, will feature rarely-told perspectives of Merdeka.
“It will deliver a cohesive multimedia story of Merdeka, not just from the perspective of the political elites, but also from ordinary people, trade unions and labour movements.
“Another special element of the event is the historical significance of the site itself,” he said at the Seri Negara building today.
What sets this event apart from other exhibitions, said Tunku Zain, was the fact that many historical events relating to Merdeka had taken place at Seri Negara, which used to be called King’s House.
“This room (Ledang room) was where documents on the formation of the Federation of Malaya was signed in 1948. The pen that was used to sign it will also be featured in the exhibition.”
He said walking tour panel discussions, movie and documentary screenings, music and dance events, as well as colouring competitions for children were some of the activities lined up for the event.
Imagined Malaysia curator and co-founder Netusha Naidu, 22, said forums on the alternative history of the country’s formation would also be organised.
“The road to Merdeka was also driven by personalities in the 1940s and 1950s, who had contentions on how Malaya should have been formed. So, we are going to give context to these personalities,” she said.
Negri Sembilan Yang diPertuan Besar Tuanku Muhriz Tuanku Munawir, is slated to launch the exhibition on Merdeka eve.
The exhibition is part of AHM’s efforts to fully utilise Carcosa Seri Negara over the next three years.
Other activities that will take place at the venue include arts and cultural performances, as well as the setting up of a permanent museum and a resource centre.