"At the George Town Waterfront" is a diorama masterpiece. A year in the making, it features a scene at the bustling waterfront of late 19th century George Town. The massive land reclamation of 1883 had extended the shoreline outwards, leading to the creation of a new waterfront named Weld Quay, after Frederick Weld.
At the George Town Waterfront, we see coolies labouring to shoulder the cargo from tongkangs, under the watchful eye of their stern overseers and supervisors. Further in, ricksaws carried wealthy passengers along.
Forming the backdrop is a row of stately mercantile buildings that house German and British trading companies. Their address runs from right to left (geographically, north to south), beginning with 1 Weld Quay, then 2 Weld Quay, and so on. As I write this, they are all well preserved buildings, many of which presently undergoing restoration. They are Boustead & Co, Schmidt, Küstermann & Co, Behn Meyer (which houses the Made In Penang Interactive Museum today), Schiffman, Herr & Company and Behr Brothers Trading Company.
"At the George Town Waterfront" is the work of master diorama sculptor Khoo Chooi Hooi. When Khoo was commissioned by the Made In Penang Interactive Museum to create a selection of dioramas, the museum never expected the magnitude of his ambition when he decided to depict a scene from the George Town waterfront during the late 19th century. In order to create the diorama, Khoo sieved through old postcards and photographs. He also took measurements of the buildings. The scene was created to scale at a ratio of 1:13. It measures about 10 meters in length. Material used include clay, polymer clay, wood, canvas and silicon.
The details in "At the George Town Waterfront" is a feast for the eye. Observant viewers will see, among others, a nasi kandar vendor, a European couple and even a kingfisher.
Ships arriving at the wharf, George Town Waterfront (2 November, 2013)
Coolies umloading the bumboats, George Town Waterfront (2 November, 2013)
Cargo loaded to the wharf at the George Town Waterfront (2 November, 2013)
Coolie resting at the George Town Waterfront (2 November, 2013)
Coolie resting at the George Town Waterfront (15 April, 2014)
Chinese ear cleaner at work (15 April, 2014)
Boats carrying cargo to the wharf (15 April, 2014)
Thank you for visiting my website, Penang Travel Tips. Since starting it in 2003, it has become my own online encyclopedia. My name is Timothy Tye, you can call me Tim. I am a full-time website author writing only my own website, to describe things and places I am curious about. To know more about me, go to www.timothytye.com
As a Christian, I hope that through this website, I am able to deliver God's Good News to people all over the world.