What if we told you that this full moon, you’ll be able to witness a very special event in the heart of the nation’s capital? What if we told you that the event will feature Malaysian Indian artists from various fields discussing their craft?

Pournami Tiruvila: Full Moon Celebration is a one day art festival organised by Malaysian Indians for all Malaysians, in conjunction with the ongoing art exhibition, Banana Leaf: A Celebration of Malaysian Indian Arts & Culture.


Banana Leaf is possibly the largest Malaysian Indian art exhibition held to date, with artists from our community showcasing their work in various mediums of art. The Pournami Tiruvila, held on Sunday, the 13th of October at GMBB, Kuala Lumpur, will feature talks, screenings and performances by prominent Malaysian Indian artists.

The highlights of the Pournami Tiruvila are talks by photographer Thevasree Krisnan, documentary photographer Mogan Selvakannu, fine-art artist Mona KV, digital concept artist Rames Harikrishnasamy as well as multidisciplinary artists Dhinesha Karthigesu and Veshalini Naidu. Goodkids Malaysia, a social enterprise is collaborating with the children of Sivananda Home, for a drum performance, titled When Bells Meet Buckets. There will also be a session on projection mapping and relaxing Indian music by ChunkyMunky and Arcis Digital.

A still from Dark Skin Is ______. Image credit: Daniel Adams & Catherhea

Among the artists exhibiting at Banana Leaf are Daniel Adams and Catherhea. The duo have conceptualised and curated a series of photographs featuring melanin rich subjects, aptly called DARK SKIN IS ______________.  This photography series challenges under-representation of dark skinned people by featuring dark skinned people of all genders, sizes and abilities. For this exhibit, the audience is invited to share their thoughts about dark skin and complete the title with post-it notes. Catherhea will be giving a talk entitled Diversity in Beauty at 6pm.

Shanjey Kumar Perumal, the director of Jagat.Award winning director Shanjey Kumar Perumal will also be at Pournami Tiruvila. His cult classic film, Jagat, will be screened at 3pm. After the screening, the director will be discuss various topics, such as his career as a filmmaker, the Malaysian Indian film industry and Padai, an art movement project with young filmmakers.

Cinematographer Thinakkaaran Thamilchelvan will be sharing his experiences in setting up and running a successful creative business. Image credit: Facebook

Another highlight would be cinematographer Thinakkaaran Thamichelvan‘s session. In his talk, Thinakkaaran will be covering the basics of setting up a business. This will include registering a business as well as setting up one’s Employee Prodivent Fund (EPF) and Social Security Organisation (SOCSO) accounts. He will then delve deeper and discuss branding. This is the perfect workshop for those who would like to know what starting a creative business entails.

If you miss the Pournami Tiruvila, don’t forget to check out Banana Leaf, the art exhibition itself, which goes on until the 20th of October.

Banana Leaf is open to people of all ages. The organiser, Ruby Subramaniam, tells us that students are welcome to visit the exhibition. “Last Sunday, the students of Sri Sunthara Ganesar Sunday School visited us, and they had a blast talking to the various artists about their work,” Ruby tells us that she and the other artists spoke to the kids about the message behind their art. “This allowed the kids to understand a little more about the various forms of art,” she tells us.

The children of Sri Sunthara Ganesar Sunday School looking at the various art pieces at Banana Leaf. Image credit: Ruby Subramaniam

Students are encouraged to visit the Banana Leaf art exhibition. Students or teachers who are interested in organising group tours can contact Ruby at [email protected]

The children of Sri Sunthara Ganesar Sunday School looking at the various art pieces at Banana Leaf. Image credit: Ruby Subramaniam

In a colourful acrylic nutshell, if you would like to see Malaysian Indians excelling in various fields of art, fields you probably never knew existed, make your way to GMBB Kuala Lumpur before the 20th of October for the exhibition. The Pournami Tiruvila workshops and talks will be held on Sunday, the 13th of October at the same venue.

Varnam.my is the proud official media partner for Banana Leaf: A Celebration of Malaysian Indian Arts & Culture. For more information on Pournami Tiruvila, click here. The official Facebook page for Banana Leaf is here. 

Banana Leaf: A Celebration of Malaysian Indian Arts & Culture – The Must-See Art Exhibition This Deepavali