Lost in the lines

My mother, silhouetted in transit at Kuala Lumpur International Airport, Malaysia. From the In Transit series

Street hawker

I’ve never seen street hawkers in Singapore, where I grew up. By the time I was old enough to actively think about my surroundings, they were gone, relocated to ubiquitous hawker centers found all over the island. Scenes like this never fail …

6

Prayers

A devotee offers prayers at the Goddess of Mercy Temple in Georgetown. Built around 1800 by the Hokkien and Cantonese, it is Penang’s oldest temple and ‘home’ to 87 gods of the Taoist, Buddhist and Confucianist faiths. Penang, Malaysia.

4

Love is…

Love is: utilitarian, service, sacrifice, shelter, feeding, unspoken, a gesture, a look, a debt, a prayer, a reason to continue. Providing shelter, that he might finish his meal while it rains. Penang, Malaysia.

2

A night at the opera

I came across a beautiful set of portraits that Chia Aik Beng made of the Teochew Opera troupe, Lao Sai Tao Yuan recently. I have returned to this series a number of times, compelled by the intimacy of his portraits, and this facet of Singapore I’ve had no contact with. Then chance …

Ice Cream Seller

An ice cream seller serves a customer from his cargo bike on the road in Geylang Serai, during the Ramadan bazaar. Singapore.

3

Thieves Market, Sungei Road

My father used to bring me to the Sungei Rd Thieves Market on weekends, to have a browse. You never knew what you would find there. The market used to cover a much larger area than it does today, with most …

2

Kopitiam, Singapore

In an old coffee shop somewhere in/near Bugis with Chia Aik Beng: She made us teh peng and kopi ice (ice tea, ice coffee) and then scurried around serving other customers , refilling containers, clearing tables. I am frequently unbalanced by the …