‘The Blind Men & The Elephant, in Kuala Lumpur’ is a virtual interactive installation that explores the sounds of a location in Kuala Lumpur through two devices simultaneously: the computer and smartphone/tablet.
To experience the installation, visit tbmatekl.com
on your computer, you will be instructed to download the app to your Android or iOS device. Your computer will connect with your mobile device and reflect your actions onto the installation.
For a better-enhanced experience, this installation allows you to interact by projecting onto the surface of your choice, for example, a wall or ceiling in your living room, making your own space into an exhibition space. Or simply another way, just enjoy it from your computer.
The inspiration behind the work is the story of ‘The Blind Men & The Elephant’, where a group of blind men feel the different parts of an elephant to learn what its totality is like, with each one of them only managing to perceive a small part of the elephant — a tusk, an ear, or a leg and insisting “This is what the elephant is like!”, thus contradicting one another.
The Blind Men & The Elephant, in Kuala Lumpur is originally an interactive audio-visual installation that takes place in a physical dark empty space, where visitors entering it will play the role of the ‘blind men’. Walking through the space, visitors will hear a composition of sounds that are unique to an object, an event, or a location in Kuala Lumpur. With a torchlight in hand, they are invited to piece together various sounds and visuals that will only be revealed when triggered by a light source.
The Blind Men & The Elephant, in Sapporo
This interactive audio-visual installation was first exhibited in Hokkaido, Japan in year 2016, titled The Blind Men & The Elephant, in Sapporo
. After exhibiting in Japan, Yap wanted to introduce this work in the local context of Kuala Lumpur, and at the same time, rediscover the city that he was born and raised in.
From Offline to Online
Yap was very excited and planned to debut his art installation in Malaysia in March 2020, but he also realised the challenge in doing so due to the uncertainty from COVID-19, therefore this interactive audio-visual installation has been evolved into this online version in order to allow everyone in the world to experience and ‘travel virtually’ to Kuala Lumpur from their own home.
The Blind Men & The Elephant, in Kuala Lumpur will essentially reflect on how Kuala Lumpur is a city that is constantly disappearing, renewing and evolving. Every person who experiences the city carries a unique but limited memory and truth of it. To piece the city’s larger narrative, we can’t merely perceive it alone — we will have to do it collectively.
Weng Nam Yap
Tenjinyama Art Studio • CAi Art Gallery Sapporo • Filamen • F Connect • Cocoa Ng • Jimmy Chong • YCF Construction • Koey & Herbie • Mee Yee Foong • Chen Mei Loo • Josline Lim • Priscilla Ng • Jun Jin Wong • Pamela Ng • Evey Kwong • Michelle Kirsten Tai • Sze Jean Lee • Koyuki Inagaki • Alice Mei • Wee Hang Chien • Satoshi Hata • Yumiko Sano • Fumi Saito • Katsuya Ishida • Daisuke Funato • Takahiro Urushi • Rosanna Catterall • Syab Phang • Okazaki Asako • Praichayon Punda(JOB) • Chee Keong Teoh • Lillian Wee