If you’re someone who is even slightly immersed in the Malaysian art scene, you would have already heard the news of Pangrok Sulap’s Sabah Tanah Air-Ku artwork removal from Art Printing Works Bangsar followed by the collective’s complete withdrawal from the recently launched exhibition, ESCAPE from the SEA.
Balai Seni Visual has housed many exhibitions since its establishment in 1958—a recent addition being the 2016 exhibition, KOLEKSI TRADISI KE POP. The gallery itself has a rich and unassuming history juxtaposed to its grey exterior plopped along Jalan Tun Razak. Recently launched exhibition ESCAPE from the SEA calls Balai Seni Visual its home.
On 21 February 2017, Lena Hendry was found guilty by a magistrate’s court in Kuala Lumpur for screening “No Fire Zone: The Killing Fields of Sri Lanka” under Section 6 of the Film Censorship Act 2002. This caused an uproar in the local human rights and also the film community, with those following the case closely coming out to make a stand for solidarity, in support of Lena Hendry in particular and against the Film Censorship Act 2002 in general.