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Rags to Riches

RUANG - which was the Urbanscapes House from last year was fast becoming a hub for the creative lot in the middle of the city. The location was great, it had ample space and very accessible made the place an ideal setting for exhibits and events.

This weekend, I was able to catch a photo exhibit hosted by Kenny Loh and Born in Malaysia at the second floor of the venue. It was the final day of the event and Kenny himself was there to welcome the visitors. I spent close to half an hour looking through the photos and they were certainly eye openers.

Ample space and great lighting ...It was basically an exhibit about the lives the immigrants in the KL inner city, how they cope with life hear, their struggles behind the scene. Each photos carry its own story, some happy, plenty are sad but fascinating none the less.

KL was becoming a hotpot of South and Southeast Asia, with he evidence being obvious everywhere. The city was fast becoming divided into quarters with each migrant population occupying their own space, displacing the locals essentially. The days when we congregated at Kota Raya and Puduraya were long gone now. There were now the territories of the Filipinos, where they congregate each weekends at the nearby church. The Nepalese were now occupying Medan Pasar. Bangladeshis and Indonesian had also established their hub.

In the next generation, the current locals may be displaced out of the inner city at the current rate. The stories and pictures just illustrated how those migrants struggled here as well as some success stories in the mix. Most of them were here to make an honest living, and I second them. My worries were the Africans who were similarly making inroads to the capital, mainly occupying the suburbs. There brought with them their own cultures and problem ....

The exhibits were well thought off and I would definitely be coming back should another instalment of the series came to fruition. I must admit that one of the photos brought tears to my eyes. It featured a Chinese family business about to be closed down as time evolved. It was originally opened by a migrant whose children had since called Malaysia their home. The shop were finally closed after being in business for a century. I snapped that particular passage below ....

I was lucky to be able to make it back to the LRT station before it started pouring ...Kenny alerted me that it was about to rain outside when I said goodbye, good luck and looking forward to more to come. I made it to the LRT station just in time before the rain fell ... A great Saturday afternoon it was ....

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