Upcycled Lights And Cookie Jars Make Malay Heritage Centre Rainbow-Bright
STORY: Nicholas Yong
02 May 2022
Here’s a bright idea – next time you’re having dinner at Kampong Glam, stop by the Malay Heritage Centre to check out “Rainbow Connection II”, a beautiful outdoor installation of 500 suspended solar light modules made from upcycled cookie containers and solar lights.
And just in time for Hari Raya Aidilfitri too!
This Insta-worthy exhibit was co-created by local artist Lee Yun Qin and beneficiaries of Brighton Connection, a non-profit social service agency that renders assistance to underserved children, families, and seniors through social development initiatives and empowerment schemes.
We ask the artist to tell us the meaning behind the mesmerising, multicoloured installation, and what the collaborative process was like.
Among the many-hued patterns, we notice flowers and leaves and fish. What does this installation represent?
"Rainbow Connection" was created based on three themes: "in the deep", "in the woods", and "in the clouds". It mimics nature, whereby the transition of colours is natural, without clear boundaries.
How did you go about this project? What was the process like?
The process was a laborious one. It included washing and removal of labels, followed by drilling of holes to secure strings. The cookies were repacked and donated to beneficiaries.
We conducted a total of four workshops with beneficiaries of Brighton Connection - they included kids, youths and seniors. At the workshops, participants used markers to create drawings based on the different themes. It was a fluid process, especially with the younger participants, who were given leeway to draw whatever came to mind based on the themes.
After the workshop, the participants finished up the artwork at their own time and pace, with guided videos and templates. I then sorted the creations based on colour. I also finished up remaining pieces which could not be finished in time.
"Rainbow Connection II" will be on display until 29 May at the Malay Heritage Centre, which will extend its opening hours till 9pm so that more people can bask in the brilliance (literally) of the installation - after that, the collection of colourful lights will travel to MacPherson estate and Somerset Youth Park later this year.
The Malay Heritage Centre is closed on Mondays.