Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Book launch: Peranakan Tiles Singapore

I was invited to Victor Lim's book launch on Peranakan Tiles Singapore, a first ever book that features the beautiful tiles often found in Peranakan houses in Singapore and also in Bukit Brown. It was a labor of love for Victor, who also happens to be a volunteer guide in Bukit Brown with his growing knowledge and collection of this tiles, he partnered Anne-Pinto Rodrigues and working together for the last 8 months or so, this coffee table book of sorts saw light. I am thankful to Victor for his personal invite to the event that was held at the Peranakan Museum and whose guest of honor was Baba Peter Wee (a descendant of Tan Keong Saik)

Book launch e-invite 

A copy of the book which i bought 

Victor Lim with Anne-Pinto Rodrigues
I remember Victor recounting his story of how he, as a young lad back in 1971 witness Singapore breakneck development. Part of the major changes that took place was the destruction of old buildings along Rochor Road (at the current Sim Lim Square site). The old buildings according to his account had a lot of beautiful tiles that were not been salvaged when it was demolished. Making friends with the building contractors, he and his friend manage to collect some of this tiles for free. This led to a life long journey of him becoming a collector of authentic peranakan tiles and eventually starting a tile company called Aster by Kyra Pte Ltd that is able to reproduce or customised this tiles based on the Peranakan designs. Victor also speaks passionately of the need to conserve what's left of the peranakan tiles has a intangible heritage and legacy of the peranakan community.

At the end of the launch, there was light refreshments that were served on top of reproduction peranakan tiles that participants of the book launch got to keep as gifts ! What a wonderful idea.
 
My article will not talk about the book itself, for that you should get a copy ! But it does help me is to understand and reference further the origins of the tiles based on its design, i.e whether it is from England, Belgium, Japan, etc. If you cannot find the book in major bookstores yet, try the Peranakan Museum Shop.

Below are some the wonderful tiles i saw during my exploration of Bukit Brown, a heritage park which is a place which many personalities are buried and also contains many artifacts of rich historical value.




















Saturday, October 17, 2015

Birdwatching in Bidadari (October 11, 2015)

Time is running out for Bidadari and since it is migratory season again, i am taking this opportunity to do some birding again in this place. It was indeed a rewarding experience and in this article i will share photos of some of the birds and other creatures i caught on photo.

Asian Paradise Flycatcher
Brown Chested Jungle Flycatcher
Siberian Blue Robin
Yellow Rumped Flycatcher
Rusty Breasted Cuckoo
Tiger Shrike

Asian Paradise Flycatcher in Bidadari
Asian Paradise Flycatcher

Asian Paradise Flycatcher in Bidadari
Asian Paradise Flycatcher 

Asian Paradise Flycatcher in Bidadari
Asian Paradise Flycatcher

Brown Chested Jungle Flycatcher in Bidadari
Brown Chested Jungle Flycatcher

Brown Chested Jungle Flycatcher in Bidadari
Brown Chested Jungle Flycatcher

Brown Chested Jungle Flycatcher in Bidadari
Brown Chested Jungle Flycatcher
Siberian Blue Robin (Female) in Bidadari
Siberian Blue Robin (Female)

Siberian Blue Robin (Female) in Bidadari
Siberian Blue Robin (Female)

Siberian Blue Robin (Female) in Bidadari
Siberian Blue Robin (Female)

Siberian Blue Robin (Female) in Bidadari
Siberian Blue Robin (Female)
Yellow Rumped Flycatcher

Yellow Rumped Flycatcher
Tiger Shrike

See also previous post on Bidadari :
Birdwatching in Bidadari (Javan Munia) May 2015, posted on May, 24, 2015
Birdwatching in Bidadari (February 2015), posted on March 06, 2015
Birdwatching in Bidadari (January 18, 2015), posted on January 21, 2015
Birdwatching before New Year 2015, posted on on January 01, 2015
Birdwatching in Bidadari - Raptors spotted (December, 2014), posted on December 26, 2014
Birdwatching in Bidadari - Local Residents (December, 2014), posted on December 16, 2014
Birdwatching in Bidadari - Blue-winged Pitta (December, 2014), posted on December 14, 2014
Birdwatching in Bidadari (November 9, 2014), posted on November 9, 2014
Birdwatching in Bidadari - Jambu Fruit Dove ( December 6 ), posted on December 6, 2013
Birdwatching in Bidadari ( November 3, 2013), posted on November 3, 2013
Weaving through Bidadari (Muslim Cemetery), posted on October 17, 2013
Weaving through Bidadari (Alkaff Gardens and Lake), posted on October 8, 2013
Weaving through Bidadari (Birdwatching), posted on October 14, 2013
Bidadari (17 December), posted on December 18, 2012
Saving Bidadari, posted on December 5, 2012
Bidadari (7 December), posted on December 9, 2012
Bidadari (18 November), posted on November 18, 2012

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Bukit Brown Iron Wrought Gates refurbished, columns relocated

Below are some of the last picture i took of the iconic gates of Bukit Brown in  its current location since Bukit Brown's first opening as a Municipal Cemetery in 1922 before its eventual relocation (reported on Straits Times, September 30) and the group that joined me for my guided tour in July 5 and September 6. It was a matter of time as the gates stood in the middle of the highway that is been constructed that will cut through Bukit Brown Heritage Park, but was is heartening to note is the good news that the gates will be conserved.

Last look at the gates of Bukit Brown 

My July 5 participants
.

Below is the photo i took at back in 2008 when the highway was not built yet and the area green and beautiful. 

Gates of Bukit Brown in 2008 



References
http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/bukit-browns-iconic-gates-to-be-refurbished-relocated
http://www.gov.sg/news/content/bukit-browns-iconic-gates-to-be-refurbished-relocated