BATU KAWAN, May 26 – Bandar Cassia to emerge as a new art city in Penang to spur tourism and creative economy.   The hipster-looking and Instagrammable container art that once scaled Penang’s creative scene to new heights now makes presence in Seberang Perai to encourage a more balanced development in the state.

Penang State Executive Councillor for Tourism and Creative Economy YB Yeoh Soon Hin said that three out of five container art structures of the Penang International Container Art Festival (PICAF) had been relocated to Bandar Cassia, Batu Kawan at Design Village Outlet Mall, Square @ Cassia and Batu Kawan Industrial Park respectively.

Meanwhile, the other two container art structures located at Kampung Terang, Balik Pulau and Dataran Pemuda Merdeka, Butterworth are kept status quo until December 2022,” he said in a statement today.   According to Yeoh, the inaugural PICAF held in 2020 was a massive canvas that allowed 12 exceptional creative talents to unleash their potential, eventually witnessing the birth of 5 three-story tall container art installations that perfectly encapsulate and narrate the identity of Penang’s local communities.  

“These installations also helped in enhancing Penang’s visibility in the international market as a street art capital, raising our popularity in the recent years,” he added. In fact, these container art installations are no stranger to local and international media especially having scored a string of awards and art-related accolades since its inauguration: 

  • “Connection” by Caryn Koh – Placed seventh in the article “Best of January 2020” by  “Street Art Cities”
  • “Connection” by Caryn Koh – Voted third in “49 fantastic examples to inspire you” by “Creative Blog.”
  • “The Art of Batik” by Abdul Rashade and Andha Ras – Named fifth in the article “Best of February 2020” 

“Therefore, moving the container art to Bandar Cassia is strategic action to promote Bandar Cassia, Batu Kawan further whereby the inclusion of container art will create a unique sense of township identity and add an artistic touch to Bandar Cassia, enhancing the creative ecosystem at the Seberang Perai,”

“This allows Bandar Cassia to be transformed into a work-life balanced city, freshening up the urban development of Bandar Cassia with a sense of creativity whilst accelerating our footsteps to make the Bandar Cassia a prominent commercial and leisure destination in Northern Peninsular Malaysia,” Yeoh added. 

On a different note, Yeoh explained that the Penang State Government has been spearheading promotional efforts to popularise Seberang Perai’s unknown and hidden beauties, demonstrating that Penang has a plethora of events and activities to be embraced beyond the island itself. 

He also said that this relocation corresponds with his efforts to promote Seberang Perai, since the first Seberang Perai Tourism Product Promo Video “The Opposite Side of the Island- Seberang Perai” campaign was just unveiled recently. 

“The goal is to bridge the gap between Penang Island and Seberang Perai in terms of tourism development. These efforts are aimed at diversifying our tourism offerings to appeal to a wider range of tourists, eventually securing them for longer and returning visits,” he said in a statement today. 

While speaking about the future of PICAF, Yeoh said that PICAF may be turned into an annual festival featuring entertainment in arts and collaboration with neighbouring partners such as IKEA, Design Village Outlet Mall, ASPEN, and Perbadanan Stadium.