Instagrammers in M’sia criticised for defiling gallery art during photo-taking

Oh no.

Mandy How | August 29, 2019 @ 03:54 pm


The Bakat Muda Sezaman (Young Contemporaries Award) exhibition runs till September 30, 2019, in Kuala Lumpur’s National Art Gallery.

Unfortunately, not all has been smooth-sailing.

On August 23, one Malaysian citizen by the name of Yiwen Bettyleong wrote a lengthy post about the behaviour of certain gallery visitors.

Installations shouldn’t be touched

In order to take photos with the installations, some Instagrammers touched, and even sat on the art works.

Photo via Yiwen Bettyleong/Facebook
Photo via Yiwen Bettyleong/Facebook
Photo via Yiwen Bettyleong/Facebook

This visitor removed an artwork from the wall in order to pose with it:

Photo via Yiwen Bettyleong/Facebook

Another visitor who sat on the artwork received an explanation that the work was not meant to be interactive.

Photo via Yiwen Bettyleong/Facebook

According to the commenter, other visitors who later sat on it eventually broke it, causing the exhibition to be removed early.

In response, the Instagrammer replied that she had “no idea”, and thought that the exhibition was made for photo-taking.

Photo via Chong Boon Pok/Facebook
Photo via Chong Boon Pok/Facebook

The commenter then gently told her that interactive art pieces will be clearly stated as such.

Photo via Chong Boon Pok/Facebook

Photos of the destroyed exhibition also surfaced on Twitter:

In case you can’t see:

Photo via @shufitri on Twitter
Photo via @shufitri on Twitter

Dos and don’ts

Besides sharing the screenshots, Leong also provided some dos and don’ts when one visits a gallery.

Artworks are not supposed to be touched, as many of them are fragile.

For example, Leong wrote, some materials might get attached to the skin, thus affecting the painting/artwork.

For art that can be touched, a clear indication would be provided by the artist, along with a descriptive note on how visitors should interact with the art.

Leong also advised against letting people roam free in the gallery, and suggested visitors stay silent while enjoying the art.

Original post here:

Top image via Yiwen Bettyleong/Facebook and @shufitri on Twitter

About Mandy How

Mandy is a pantry rat. She eats everything in the pantry (except other people's food).

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