March 20, 2016

Penang Trick Art Museum, Penang…become part of a painting

Two dimensional painting that trick the viewer into thinking they exists in three-dimensions allowing visitors to ‘crawl into’ the paintings to take amusing, and often bizarre, photographs. This art form originated in Japan and is gradually gaining worldwide popularity.

Sitting on a flying carpet, pulling Sadako out of the TV by her hair, battling mummies are all possible at Penang Trick Art Museum. Unlike other museums where signs such as “do not take photos” or “do not touch” abound, this museum is all about taking photos and being part of the art. It’s a surreal experience walking among art that seems to leap out of the frame.   This is a great place to have some silly juvenile fun.

During an age when ‘virtual reality’ is taking over the digital world, artists have shown that all you really needed is a brush and a canvas to trick the mind. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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November 1, 2015

Madame Tussards, Singapore…How much fun did I have? About 15 minutes worth

Since I am obviously not cool enough to have real celebrity friends, I usually like to spend a day at Madame Tussauds Wax Museum everywhere I go and pretend to mingle with the A-listers.  I would take selfies of me shaking hands with President Obama, posing with Angelina Jolie, or fulfilling my dream of doing sit-ups alongside David Beckham!

Madame Tussauds, which considers itself the plus ultra of wax artistry has sunk to the depths with this overpriced and cheesy display in Singapore. The exhibits in Singapore are boring and it’s way too short. The four-minute boat ride called Spirit of Singapore does not add any value to the museum. If you have been to Madame Tussaud’s in London, Los Angeles or New York City you will be extremely disappointment by this museum.

How much fun did I have at Madame Tussards Singapore? About 15 minutes worth. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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August 10, 2015

DreamWorks Animation The Exhibition, Singapore…pretty amazing to get to peek behind the scenes of your favourite movies

As it’s name suggests “Journey from Sketch to Screen” is divided to three sections: character, story and world, the exhibition shows the entire creative process from start to end. There are lots to see on how a motion picture is born from a scratch pad idea to the details of the muscle movement of the characters.

Love the various storyboards, models and reference material from the films that they have posted around. It’s all around so cool. It’s pretty amazing to get to peek behind the scenes of your favourite movies and see the inner workings. There are plenty of photo ops with the displays. Lining the halls and walls, I was fascinated with the models/sculptures, detailed art, and drawings. The highlight for me was the panoramatic, 180-degree cinematic experience of Dragon Flight. Giving viewers a virtual and dizzying ride on the back of a dragon as you fly over Berk, the township from How to Train Your Dragon.

All in all, a pretty awesome exhibition. I loved every bit of it! This is the true truth as I say it as it is…




January 25, 2015

Jonker 88 (Museum Café) , Melaka…think twice about ever waiting on this queue

At any given moment in Melaka, you’ll find locals and tourists waiting in line outside Jonker 88. It’s a tourist’s rite of passage to stand on that line. Peranakan style food – Baba Laksa (a cross between curry mee and laksa) and chendol – as well as home-made kuih are among the delicacies served in this habitually packed little café. But the lines and the hype aren’t fully warranted.

Part cafe and part museum, it’s still fun to have a bite in there, however, the blending of the coconut with the gula Melaka which is what makes cendol so good, disappointingly, was anaemic and lacked fragrance here. Chendol-loving purists are left with one reality: The chendol at Jonker88 is overrated.

I’m not saying that the chendol or food at this place are bad by any means, just overexposed and maybe a bit overhyped. You should think twice about ever waiting on this Jonker 88 line. This is the true truth as I say it as it is… jonker88

December 15, 2012

The Art of the Brick Exhibition, Singapore…one of a kind LEGO exhibition

Hailed as one of CNN’s top 10 Global must-see exhibitions, The “Art of the Brick” exhibit features Nathan Sawaya’s traveling collection of awe-inspiring and thought-provoking large-scale LEGO sculptures. Both playful and amazing, a typical, common toy is elevated to the status of refined, fine art through Sawaya’s creative ability to transform LEGO bricks into a new level of awesomeness.

The captivating sculptures which ranges from whimsical to complex are amazingly elaborate and will present a new perspective on imagination and creativity. Check out the swimmer, T-Rex, portrait of Hitchcock, painting of a bowl of fruits. The kids and big kids alike, are sure to be delighted with the grand displays of vivid colour and creativity.

If you’re in Singapore anytime between now till 14 April 2013, make a beeline for the ArtScience Museum, this is an awesome chance to see this exhibit for yourself! This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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July 7, 2012 SK telecom Ubiquitous Museum, Seoul…the future has arrived

Wow! This is a concept museum where you can experience the future of communication and IT upclose and personal. T.Um is operated by SK Telecom, Korea’s largest Information Communication Technology(ICT) company. It is truly a fascinating place to visit. I had so much fun here.

Our guide, Stephen, speaking in fluent English handed us a special mobile device called the T.Key and we were asked to create a special cyber avatar called T.Me which folowed me as I experienced different rooms in the museum. Everything is very much hands on and interective. It would definitely make a person appreciate how far technology has improved over time and what our future years will look like. I came away from the experience feeling more knowledgeable and appreciative of life imitating art.  Oh, did I mention, much smarter too.

The only disappointing thing for me was that a couple of the front-liner female staff were downright rude.

If you have not been there, you must plan on paying a visit.  You’re guaranteed not to be disappointed.  I have seen too many museums, and never imagined the wonderful experience with this one.  It’s like a Disneyland attraction for geeks. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

May 13, 2012

Novus, Singapore…Pray you don’t get attended to by Vanny Seah, the sales manager

I am absolutely appalled at the shoddy service and treatment by Vanny Seah – the Sales manager of Novus.

Novus is a funky restaurant in Singapore’s national Museum. With a seating capacity of 60 in the dining room and 50 in the courtyard, Novus was my choice venue for a private event I was organizing. Vanny Seah attended (or rather didn’t bother to attend) to me. She was dismissive, condescending and simply didn’t bothered. On the day of the event, she was total bystander. She didn’t deliver on her promises and made herself so difficult to contact when we needed to fix things.

We are Singaporeans, we are restaurant people, we never complain about prices and try not to judge service too harshly, but Vanny Seah is a travesty. This is the true truth as i say it as it is…

September 10, 2011

Ford’s Theatre, Washington DC…like a travel back in time.

Ford’s Theatre was an amazing experience to tour – to see where Lincoln was sitting when he was shot.

You must get tickets at the box office, but entry is free. How he died is just sad and you feel it when they tell the story of that night. In the actual theater, you can peer at the Presidential Box where the President and his wife and guests were seated – where no one is allowed to sit anymore.  There is also a museum in the theater, with interesting pieces like the gun used to shoot Lincoln, Booth’s diary, knife and boot, etc. I thought Lincoln died in Ford’s Theater, but he actually died in a house across the street called the Peterson House. The ticket you get at Ford’s Theatre is the same one you use to visit the Peterson House, but I didn’t have time to go in there.

This FREE tour and site is well organized. It was awesome to feel like a tourist traveling back in time. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

February 2, 2011

Genocide Museum TUOL SLENG, Phnom Penh…visit this to understand the shocking horrors of the Khmer Rouge madness

If you don’t have the time to visit the Killing Fields (located 14.5 kilometers) outside of the city, the Genocide Museum is accessible and educational. The museum is a very disturbing place to visit and a good way to learn more about the very important and eerily not-so-distant past of this country.

Tuol Sleng used to be a high school in a lovely residential neighbouthood but was transformed into a place of torture and death during the terrifying reign of Pol Pot. Tousands of people were brought here to be interrogated (tortured) by Khmer Rouge. Most were later taken to the nearby killing fields to be put to death.

There are pictures of all the victims and some of the horrible things done to them. You can still see some of the torture devices and traces of blood. The exhibits are labeled well in English. You will hardly believe the deep horrors the victims faced until you step into the blood-stained prison yourself and looking into their terrified eyes in the black and white photos. Your stomach may turn at some of the displays here.

It is essential to visit Tuol Sleng to understand the shocking horros ofthe Khmer Rouge madness. It’s the most profound museum experience I have ever been to. Your trip to Cambodia would not be complete if you miss this. It is a must see!

It’s unbelievable to think that all these atrocities happened in my lifetime, 1975-1979. If there is a hell, Pol Pot would be burning in the hottest corner. This is the true truth because I still say it as it is…

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