Aesthetics – Kuala Lumpur

Muddy Confluence

I always assumed Kuala Lumpur was one of the more overlooked cities in the region so was pleasantly surprised (albeit vaguely perplexed) that she was rated the 10th most visited city in the world by the Euromonitor International, trailing behind New York(!!!) which was ranked at number 9. Proud as I am of my birthplace, I did find it curious that almost as many people visited Kuala Lumpur (11.62 million) as they did the Big Apple (12.2 million).

Capital city of Malaysia, dotted between Bangkok and Singapore in the South East Asian trail, and aesthetically a melange of various architectural influences.  Mainly referred to by its abbreviations, KL is not an old city by any means. Founded in 1857, she started off as a tin mining experiment, grew organically, and is presently the financial centre and the most populous city in the country (1.5 million). The past, present and future chaotically synthesises itself in this metropolis – Wikipedia detects Mughal, Tudor, Neo-Gothic, Grecian-Spanish, Malay-Islamic and modernist influences in design of the major properties in KL. As a native here, I enjoyed taking these photographs as a way of re-learning my origins.

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Old Moorish architecture by AB Hubback

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Batu Caves, with its newly painted stairs. Apparently a polarising decision but I thought it made the place look incredibly vibrant. 

 

Final Words

It’s hard to figure out what are my final words on KL. Like one’s feelings about one’s own family, there is no objective way to begin and conclude what is essentially part of your beating heart, your subconscious mind and your cultural genes. I love her of course, in the primal way that we love our parents, and it is the one spot of the globe where I feel fully in charge. But is she beautiful? Welcoming? Intoxicating? Vibrant? Boring? Suffocating? I don’t know… hope the photos are interesting though and happy to hear your thoughts on this.

 

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