Dewan Sri Pinang was built in the early 1970's in the Brutalist architectural style sprawned from the modernist architectural movement. Dewan Sri Pinang serves as a venue for live performances, and is still one of the most popular auditoriums in Penang. For many years, the Penang Public Library used to be housed within Dewan Sri Pinang, but has since been moved to Seberang Perai. On the other hand, the Penang State Art Gallery moved to Dewan Sri Pinang from the upper floor of the Penang State Museum, opening more additional space for itself as well as for the museum.
Dewan Sri Pinang, side view (21 August, 2011)
In front of Dewan Sri Pinang used to be Edinburgh House, a mansion belonging to 19th century Penang tycoon Koh Seang Tat, who donated the Municipal Fountain to the George Town in 1883. Edinburgh House was so named because it housed the Duke of Edinburgh during his visit to Penang in 1869. The road running along the side of Dewan Sri Pinang is still called Duke Street.
Even earlier than Edinburgh House, the site was originally the location of Ossidian House, a property belonging to James Scott, the partner to Francis Light. That house is believed to be located near to Green Hall or where Jalan Tun Syed Sheh Barakbah is located today, whereas Edinburgh House is located further east, close to the rear of the Town Hall, from which its driveway was named Duke Street.
Foyer of Dewan Sri Pinang (21 August, 2011)
Behind Edinburgh House, where Dewan Sri Pinang is situated, used to known as Ranong Ground. It belonged to the Khaw Family (patriach Khaw Soo Cheang with prominent son Khaw Sim Bee, grandsons Khaw Joo Tok and Khaw Joo chow). A Khaw family mansion, the Rajah's Lodge, used to stand here. The site was eventually donated to the Municipality.
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