News: SEACS E-Museum Launch, 1st Dec 2011

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Ice sculpture featuring ceramic sherds from Kensoon Gallery
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Faizal on the guzheng
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SEACS President Alvin Chia (at right) with Ms. Elaine Ng, CEO of NLB, and Prof. Wang Gungwu
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Pre-launch discussions with (from left) Marjorie Chu, Prof. Wang Gungwu, Dr. Leedom Lefferts from the Smithsonian, and Prof. John Miksic

The Society held a launch for its latest project, the E-Museum of Southeast Asian Ceramics, at the POD, on the 16th level of the National Library of Singapore, on 1st Dec 2011. The Guest of Honour was Prof. John Miksic, Singapore’s foremost and most renowned archaeologist.

It was a lovely evening in a remarkable venue which provided a stunning view of the city, accompanied by exquisite music as well as delectable hors d’oeuvres and wine to whet the appetite of the attendees, all organised by our Vice-President, Marjorie Chu.

The launch started at 7.30pm with an introduction to the E-Museum by our President, Alvin Chia, who talked about the Society’s motivations and aims for the project, as well as the features that are currently available. If you have not yet visited our E-Museum, click here!

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President Alvin Chia giving his speech to a rapt audience
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Prof. John Miksic talking about technology and how it affects culture

Next, our Guest of Honour, Prof. John Miksic enthused about the future of the E-Museum. He suggested many avenues for international collaboration, such as with Cambodian archaeologists and the discoveries of the Phnom Kulen sites (sponsored by SEACS with funds from Lee Foundation), with Myanmar or Indonesia (former SEACS President’s AP Rajah’s Collection), as well as with Dr. Leedom Lefferts and curator Louise Cort of the Smithsonian on their ethnological research on pottery making in Thailand.

Prof. Miksic added that, locally, partnerships could be made with the NUS Museum to resume a relationship with an institution of higher learning which was at the root of the Society’s founding 40 years earlier. He also noted that the Bakau wreck at the Maritime Experiential Museum & Aquarium on Sentosa still remains to be studied extensively, and that the Belitung cargo needed a database, which the E-Museum could host. Finally, a website that managed and presented information on shipwrecks and underwater archaeology in the region is still lacking. The Society has indeed planned to address this last and other issues, in its forthcoming activities for the E-Museum in 2012.

After his speech, Prof. Miksic was presented with a gift, as was Ms. Elaine Ng of the NLB which has been a staunch supporter of the Society and its activities, and the E-Museum officially launched to great applause.

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President Alvin Chia presenting Prof. John Miksic with his gift, with Ms. Ingrid Hanson, the MC for the evening, assisting
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Alvin presenting Ms. Elaine Ng of NLB with SEACS’ last publication, “Southeast Asian Ceramics: New Light on Old Pottery”
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E-Museum being launched
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Alvin with staff and members of NLB and NHB

Thus concluded an evening filled with promise for the future…
We look forward to 2012 and hope that that our members and friends from around the world will support us in our endeavours!

For more information on how to join our Society as it leaps into the 21st century, click here, or write to us at ceramic@seaceramic.org.sg!