The writing (or decorations) is on the wall


No 17, Jalan Hang Jebat, Malacca. This is one of my watercolours done in the 1990, from a collection of 64 paintings of the facades of early shophouses in Penang, Malacca, Kuala Lumpur and Singapore. These watercolours were my way of contributing to the documentation and conservation of our architectural heritage.

As the legend goes, Malacca was founded by Parameswara, the fugitive with his group fleeing from Singapore, about 500 years ago. Later he went on to establish the first Malacca Sultanate in the 15th century.

At that time Malacca was a natural port that sheltered the sailors from the north-east and south-west monsoons in this region. The monsoons were one of the keys to the success of Malacca as a trading port in the early sailing years. The winds brought the Arabs, Indians and then the Europeans from the West and the Javanese, Bugis and Chinese from the East.

As years went by, due to its increasing strategic and commercial importance, Malacca became a battle ground as the colonial world powers and the local warlords fought to control it.

But despite all the wars and violence in the waters of the Malacca Straits, many of the early sailors, traders, pirates, warriors and labourers of various races established their new homes in Malacca.

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2 thoughts on “The writing (or decorations) is on the wall”

  1. I still have a collection of your cards. I have plans to frame some. I’m getting closer as I organize and select. It’s fun to see what comes up top after years. Art connected to great memories bring enjoyment.
    Ah, Malacca.
    Thank you Victor for many carefully created images.

  2. You are right about some paintings and how they are connected to memories
    and bring enjoyment. Good to know you are well and getting organised. I can’t
    say that of myself, I’m still not see the light…keep well.

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