Overview participating exhibitions
The late colonial state administrators used identity photographs to control people’s movements and to register criminals. This colonial legacy was adopted by the new independent nations and became the model of surveillance-oriented governments. In ROYAL MALAYSIA POLICE series (2012), Malaysian photographer Eiffel Chongcontests the foundational principle of this visual documentation regime by appropriating found identity photographs of police and criminals from an abandoned police station in Kuala Lumpur. His juxtaposition of police passport photographs and criminal mug shots demonstrate Sekula’s notion of “the honorific and repressive functions” of photography. His selection of decaying photographs from an abandoned police station illustrates, literally and metaphorically, the institutional collapse of the state’s visual surveillance apparatus.
Eiffel Chong (Malaysia, 1977) has had solo exhibitions in Malaysia, Singapore and Hong Kong. He has shown
at the Singapore International Photography Festival (2008 and 2012), Cut: New Photography from Southeast Asia (Kuala Lumpur, Jogjakarta, Manila and Singapore, 2008 and 2010). Royal Malaysia Police was a shortlisted for the Sovereign Asian Art Prize 2013, and Chong was also a finalist for the Young Contemporary Art Awards
in Malaysia 2006. A photography lecturer at an art institution in Malaysia, Chong has also acted as a mentor and judge for various regional photography awards.