Penang, Malaysia is enjoying a new, record-breaking artwork by artist Emmanuel Jarus, who recently painted the country’s largest mural ever.
As arts editor Kipras Sumskas tells us, the new mural by Jarus is five-stories high and depicts Caryn Koh, a doctor-turned-artist. The young Canadian muralist usually paints the people he meets during his travels around the world, and this was no exception.
“I met Dr. Caryn Koh when me and my sponsor went to Kuala Lumpur, where a fellow street artist, Ernest Zacharevic, was finishing his new piece. Caryn was the one who showed me around the city and took me to the famous Batu Caves”, Jarus remembers. “Inside the caves, she was looking at her phone almost the entire time, but then she stepped onto some stairs and lifted her head up just for a brief blink of an eye. The only light in the caves was hitting her whole body in a distinctive way, so I managed to snap a photo of her in that particular position. It was like seeing the two different realities—the one in your smartphone and the one around you—connect. Therefore, I wanted to reflect the essence of that moment and that’s how the idea for the mural was born”.
After Penang, Emmanuel Jarus hit up the WonderWalls mural festival in Wollongong last month and is now participating in a month-long art residency in Melbourne. Keep an eye out!
Photos by Nikko Tan.