16 - 31 AUGUST 2019 GALLERY & DECK, HIN BUS DEPOT * Free Admission
OBSCURA Festival is Malaysia’s premier photography festival that celebrates photography from Asia and around the globe. Each year, the festival hosts a series of exhibitions, talks, workshops, portfolio reviews and slide shows. The festival also organises fringe events, including kids photography programmes with its festival partners.
For Opening Night of OBSCURA Festival of Photography 2019 for George Town Festival (GTF) 2019, PUSAKA is proud to present a special performance of the Kuda Kepang trance dance tradition by Kumpulan Kuda Kepang RHF from Parit Raja, Batu Pahat, Johor.
Opening Night of OBSCURA Festival of Photography 2019 Date: Friday, 16 August 2019 Time: 7pm-10pm Kuda Kepang performance starts at 9pm (on the lawn) Venue: Hin Bus Depot, 31A Jalan Gurdwara, Georgetown, Penang.
Kuda Kepang is the subject of Alam (Tak) Nyata, a collaborative work by photographer Cheryl Hoffmann and writer Pauline Fan, featured at OBSCURA Festival of Photography 2019, with the curatorial theme of 'Subcultures'.
Kuda Kepang is a dance of Javanese origin performed in Johor by communities of Javanese descent, particularly in Batu Pahat, Kluang and Muar. Kuda Kepang is performed by nine male dancers with two dimensional 'horses' traditionally made of pleated dried mengkuang leaves. The dance commemorates the tale of the Wali Songo (Nine Saints) of Java, who played a vital role in spreading Islam to the interiors of Java during the 15th and 16th centuries. The music ensemble of gong, gendang and saron, emulates the sound of horse hooves that carries the dancers away on hypnotic rhythms. As the state of euphoria increases, some of the dancers fall into trance, embodying ‘totem spirits’ known as isim that are expressed in various archetypal forms – eagle, monkey, tiger, princess, warrior.
Kumpulan Kuda Kepang RHF from Parit Raja, Batu Pahat, Johor is a group of young Kuda Kepang performers who unfailingly enthral and mesmerise audiences with their combination of intensity and playfulness.