Saturday, 8 June 2013

Last Surviving Bungalow at Wilkie Terrace

78-year old bungalow - 13 Wilkie Terrace
13 Wilkie Terrace
HIdden away from the busy streets of Singapore along Mt Sophia and Wilkie Road, standing a 78-year old bungalow that was once lived by Chia family for three generations, will soon be demolished to make way for Condominium developments.
As I was entered the old structure of once in the history of the past and the people who stayed in effort to forget, the moment I stepped in, feeling sad of parting of this historical house.
Facade of A Colonial Bungalow
However, this 9,321 sq ft 78-year old house was sold to one of the property estates - Roxy-Pacific Holdings for $24.5 million early this year. It is believed to be the last of four properties there to be acquired by the real estate firm. Typical of Colonial Bungalow that used to live by the Royalty of the past. This house has a history of her own and yet to bring the memory of the times before it torn down by end of June 2013.
Thick Conrete Wall of old times
The person to whom I chatted with him - Yen Phang who is a member of Chia family and this bungalow was built by his grandfather in 1935.  Yen Phang as being formally trained in law and his background in a discipline is so steeped in linguistic traditions has complemented his informal education in all things as visual. Although Yen Phang would recognise me when my hubby and I went there on 8th Jun 2013 in late afternoon after visiting at 11 Upper Wilkie Road where there was an events - ArtFesta on 8th and 9th Jun 2013.
Yen Phang and I
The buildings in Wilkie Road, there are two notable buildings which are conserved. One is the Church of Christ of Malaya, built in 1958, and the other is Sophia Flats, built in the early 1930s, and one of a few apartment blocks to survive from that period.
Paperwork of Art
Yashica-D - camera of old time
This time, of all questions that made me wonder "Why do people create art?" If you visit the art museum, you can see how true it is. Well, it's so overwhelming and impossible to really take it all in. This event had a great impression for me to look around the bungalow with lots of paintings and artworks that inspired me. I had studied in art during my secondary school days and love arts, paintings and crafts when I was in art class and later switched to technical class.
Painting work and a broken brick
Wall of illusion 
I noticed this painting that I used to call 'Wall of Illusion' that loads with Super String Oscillations that used by lights bulbs all over the 'bare' human body to create an illusion behind the dark wall.
Close up of photo that printed with Diasec Mount
All I could say that this dancer, Soren Niewelt was sitting on the stool facing the door where there is a long corridor ahead of it. This photo on the wall is photographed by Matthew G. Johnson who is a Fine Art Photographer based in Singapore.
Ahem! Is that you..Soren Niewelt?
Seeming unnoticed of my presence, just stood in front of him to be able to snap a photo surprisingly, well posed and glued to his laptop, seriously.
Ceramic cups and bowls
Close-up of ceramic bowl
 By observing of the cups and bowls that displaying all over the places that only be seen at the 2nd level at the corner of the courtyard near the kitchen. I could make out to be ceramic cups and bowls that was formerly imported by South-east Asia regions during early years. This ceramic cups and bowls are fragile items and have to be careful when handled with care. My household have these ceramic cups and bowls since that being shifted from an old house in Havelock Road where my-in-laws once lived.
Saga Seeds and paint with variable size
On the floor lies 8000 saga seeds are reminiscent of deep emotions and passion and this gift from nature is often used by many as tokens of love and affection; sometimes it's also symbolic of one's earnest heart to apologize. So pick it up and pass it on to the one you care. This saga seed is inspired by Nicola Anthony who is an artist/writer based in Singapore.
My Saga Seeds
(Photo taken by mobile phone Sony Ericsson)
Saga Seeds in Vase with dry flowers
(Photo taken by mobile phone Sony Ericsson)
My mum and I have this saga seeds that keep for years till now. We use these saga seeds for other purposes. We can put saga seeds in vases, bottles of any shapes and sizes for decorations. My mum's neighbouring blocks also come and ask for these nowadays for other purposes. My mum and my childhood friend's mum (lives on the 3rd floors of her block) collected these saga seeds near their house along the old trees many years ago.
Vintage of an old piano
This rustic of an old piano that caught my eyes as if I was on the way back from the past to where one of my aunts lived, who had an old piano with beautifully designed that made of teak wood that can lasted for years. But somehow, its colour faded and yet tips of the piano keys are still intact.
Recycled clothes and mixed media
Along the backyard, is a spiral staircase that reminded me of one of my uncle's 3 storey bungalow that I climbed up the staircase, round and round till I reached the top of the building. But this spiral staircase is different as it's only one level up that too narrow. This recycled clothes that I believed to be hanged on the pole at the edge of the spiral staircase that one person would climb up. Recycled clothes is created by Yen Phang.
Look through the rusty grille window
An old rusty grille windows of the past that being replaced by aluminium windows of the modern bungalow that came to light. Look through the grille would remind me as a toddler where my mum's house was once had metal grille gate door that similar to this one.
Close-up of rusty grille window and blind shade shutter window
Those were the days when there was a bungalow that built with blind shade shutter windows in the early years. These old blind shade shutter windows can be seen at pre-war houses in Singapore.
Corridor to the past
As I walked to the corridor that remind me of the past and it is a historically meaningful route throughout which people or goods have been moved; where evidence exists while at the same time turning rooms into a series of dead ends. This route to where you walk to each of the room that represents your childhood of the room that you belong..
Balcony door linked to brick roof tiles
Noticing the balcony locked door that linked to brick roof tiles as if the owners of the house need to clean and wash up the root tiles and or repaired the roof tiles when the rain season come. It would be dangerous to walk on the brick roof tiles that might be slippery when wet.
Modern Kitchen
Tucked away at the corner of the 2nd level, where the balcony door located - Modern Kitchen where the Chia family used.
Round Bakelite Electrical Light Switch
This Authentic Round Bakelite Electrical Light Switch on the wall that is more than 4 decades ago. This art deco round toggle switch is still in functional use and mounted with wooden block could cause fire risks if not careful.
Green stained glass window
Close-up of Green stained glass window
A green stained glass window can be found in high-rise buildings and houses. It is very pretty with the reflections. And the angle isn't that good,  I couldn't really access it well. It only opened at the angle 90' and not widely open to a fullest scenery outside.

Muted Landscapes
The deep 'red' muted landscape represents one of the deepest sense of belonging and therefore is not what I see but a way of seeing places in this room. These two landscapes are created by Kanchana Gupta who is a artist of Indian origin, who lives and works in Singapore.
Spacious of Living Hall
This huge living hall is where the Chia family used for gatherings that bonded together for a chat, work and play, thus watching TVs that are homes to be called, loved, hurt and the  laughters from the living hall to be heard. 
Old Romance screening on 8-9 June 2013
At Displacements' event, this living hall is used for Sota students who dance at the living hall on 1st week of June 2013 and movie screenings 'Old Romances' on 8th and 9th June 2013 at 8pm.
Old box luggage with old vintage items
I noticed this old fashioned box luggage is more than 6 decades ago where my beloved father-in-law had one at my place which he kept for more than 95 years and now I still keep it.
Artworks of all places
Artworks splattering around the rooms and hall as well as courtyard that painted on the wall in red that created an atmosphere around the house. Public can look out for displays along the wall of corridor to each of the rooms.
Mirror, Mirror on the Wall
Look through the mirror on the wall that reflects its movement, time and energy of the moving objects or living things by the look angles of reflection.
Ladder of Performance
I think the power ladder of performance as the road to universe including national awareness, balancing of our weights if sitting on top of the ladder facing the wall. To regain our good posture is an easy and very important way to maintain a healthy mind and body.
Weight of the staircase
This sight of the 'short' stairway leading to the various rooms and a living hall. Stairway should not end at a door, such as the front door, or face a bedroom door. This stairway may pose a danger especially fallen from the steps if he or she is in the hurry or dash to the kitchen nearby. A rustic steps or rough stone piers cement would be safe to be build if chosen wisely for safety of the family members.
Stick with S Pen pointed on the Samsung Note
Close-up of the S Pen draws circle on Samsung Note
Came across one of the creative arts that many people have in mind by using a few stick tightening up with strings to the end of S Pen (see pic above). And thus these people had this ideas by creating a circle by pointing S Pen onto their Samsung Note using a stick standing upright straight. I didn't know the lady was sitting on the chair none other than 'Pei Yun Cheng' whom is one of the bloggers who wrote her visits to Displacements. Click Here of her blog. 
One-Armed Swordsman by Boedi Widjaja
The guy standing to whom I rarely know his name and well, I figured it out would be one of the artists - Boedi Widjaja whose origin was from Indonesia and lives and works in Singapore. Based on this guy whose works are internally-charged and drawn from 1st-hand experiences and noticed on the wall of his drawing of 'One-Armed Swordsman' this iconic martial arts film about disconnections - a missing arm, a broken sword and a half-torn manual. I recalled one of the Hong Kong filmed which was featured in 'One-Armed Swordsman' is a 1967 Hong Kong wuxia film produced by the Shaw Brothers (SB) Studio. Was directed by Chang Cheh, was his first of the new style of wuxia films emphasizing male anti-heroes and violent swordplay since.
Cat Welfare Society
Close-up of the kittens
As I was walking down the staircase in the afternoon, there I saw three cages of adults cats and kittens for adoptions drive on 8th and 9th June 2013. For cat-lovers who are missed it and they will have a chance to adopt them. For I as a animal lover, who had a beloved cat for 15 years and passed on since 2003. I will be sad if I adopt a new kitten and I will think of my beloved cat.
'Whitewash' painted on the wall in present time
Travelled back to the past in time (original shot)
The wall of courtyard is where I saw from the pre-war houses that travelled back to the past in time and I snapped a shot of the wall building to make it look like an old photo (no edited) in the past. This 'red whitewash' painted on the wall is created by an artist, Elizabeth Lim
Courtyard beautifully arranged
Close-up of Orchid flower and marker board 
At the corner of courtyard, there was freshly 'Orchid flowers' display with a pinky vase placed on the bar table to welcome you.
Yen Phang working on the cashbox
Before I leave the house, I would manage to say 'Goodbye' to this house and I saw him busy counting something which I may not say, onto the cash-box.
Stairway to the future
Stairway to the past
As I was walking up the stairway to where the courtyard was, leading the store room at the corner end but now I was walking down to the main road where the film photographer was filmed and photo shot of the wall of the building.
Film photographer shot a film of the façade wall
So curious as I was, I shot them at a distance far from the Christian Assembly church where I stood at the end of the road. Seeing them closely, I would make out their steady holding camera with tripod pointing on the wall with dry grass pasted it. These grass (on the wall) has been there for a few weeks till it went dry without water as if the grass had burned under the hot weather during this period. These grass was there early when this bungalow opened before end of May with loads of school childrens' events.
Will this no 13 letter box be conserved?
It will be good if this no. 13 letterbox be conserved for the Chia family for memorable of the historic house.
Well, at least, I am delighted to be able to visit this heritage 78 year-old bungalow on 4th June 2013 and on the 8th June 2013 with my hubby. This event was organised by Displacements' teams, for the whole month of June 2013 and the last entry will be on 23 June 2013.
Behind Closed Gate
13 Wilkie Terrace has history of her own and would therefore be encouraged to come and visit them before their parting way of the long standing house they once lived.
For more information, you may look at their website here.

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