Large star-shaped installation to highlight Urban Xchange 2015

A visual of The Star art installation that will be installed on a building at Jalan Raja Uda, Butterworth by artist Jun Ong as part of Urban Xchange. — Picture courtesy of Urban Xchange
A visual of The Star art installation that will be installed on a building at Jalan Raja Uda, Butterworth by artist Jun Ong as part of Urban Xchange. — Picture courtesy of Urban Xchange

GEORGE TOWN, Oct 19 — A four-storey high art installation in the shape of a 12-sided star will be launched as part of this year’s Urban Xchange (UX) Festival.

The international public art festival is back for the second year to bring more murals to the state along with other works including the UX: Artisan Project and this large scale art installation by young Malaysian artist Ong Jun Hao.

Touted to be the biggest art installation in Malaysia, the star-shaped installation will be placed within the concrete superstructure of a building along Jalan Raja Uda in Seberang Perai.

Ong, who goes by Jun Ong, created the site-specific installation as the main highlight for this year’s UX.

The 27-year-old architect will be making the one-of-its-kind installation with close to 500 metres of steel cables and LED strips, producing an abstract light installation of steel simply called “The Star.”

“This is my biggest project so far. The scale of this project was probably the biggest challenge. I try to see this as an architectural project whereby there is a team of consultants coming together to make possible my concept as an artist,” said Ong.

“The Star” will not only be a new landmark artwork for Butterworth but it will also mark a new community space that can be used for performances, markets and music concerts.

Jun Ong will create the massive The Star light installation as the highlight of Urban Xchange at Jalan Raja Uda. — Picture courtesy of Urban Xchange
Jun Ong will create the massive The Star light installation as the highlight of Urban Xchange at Jalan Raja Uda. — Picture courtesy of Urban Xchange

The installation will be officially launched on November 7 in collaboration with ZAP and the Syiok Wasabi Street Bazaar which will be held there on the same day.

The massive installation of “The Star” will be video mapped by Berlin-based media artist AWK.

AWK will create a multi-layered video mapping piece for the Hin Bus Depot outdoor area;  [email protected]: AWK will be playing at the depot till midnight for a week from November 1 onwards.

UX is a street art festival that focuses on a diverse programme combining public art and cultural exchange. This year, it aims to bridge the gap between the island and the mainland, contemporary artists and traditional trade artisans and local and international artists.

The festival, to kick off on October 31 this year and ending on November 15, will feature the Artisan Project, public murals, sculptures, panel discussions, workshops and other activities at the Hin Bus Depot and “The Star” site in Butterworth.

This year, world-famous street artist Alexandre Farto from Portugal will also create a mural in Butterworth for the festival.

The artist, popularly known as Vhils during his graffiti days, will create an artwork with his famous drilling method on a side wall of a building that used to be the very first hotel in Butterworth.

Vhils, named as among the 30 best artists in the world under 30 years old by Forbes magazine, will drill and carve a portrait of a local person on the wall using power tools.

Other international artists brought in this year include DALeast from China, Twoone from Japan, Sabek from Spain, Yes from Spain and Nafir from Iran. They will create site-specific murals around George Town and also the mainland.

Find out more about UX and its activities at www.urbanxchange2015.com.

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