Today I spent the whole morning shooting the majestic Menara TM. The uniqueness about Menara TM is you can get totally different picture when shooting from different angle. This is due to its special asymmetrical design unlike other common office buildings.
However its architect Hijjas Kasturi Associates are well known to be the architect behind many prominent landmarks that have crafted the skyline of Kuala Lumpur. Other prominent skyscrapers that were designed by Hijjas Kasturi Associates are Menara Maybank which once was the tallest building in Kuala Lumpur, the hourglass-inspired Bangunan Tabung Haji, Menara Tun Sambanthan and Menara MPPJ just to name a few.
Menara TM is the building of Telekom Malaysia’s (TM) headquarters. It is 310m high and was shaped to represent a sprouting bamboo shoot or rebung in Malay. It has 55 floors interrupted by a series of hanging gardens rising upward in a spiralling motion, a form reminiscent of “a plant growing tall, anxious to reach the light, with solid roots to anchor it but with the beauty of an unfurling leaf”.
This is intelligent architecture designed to fit into the surrounding environment with aesthetically appreciable design and expedients promoting energy conservation: examples include the tower’s orientation, the design of the windows, the energy efficiency system and the Hiross Flexible Space System for climate control using the space under the floor to circulate air and create customised microclimates in different areas. A large theatre for up to 2500 people and a recreational centre for Telekom Malaysia staff complete the structure, which totals more than 487,000 m2.
I greatly enjoyed shooting this beautiful and majestic edifice. Fortunately the lighting was favourable and it helped accentuate the forms and curves that this building is known for.
I am pleased to share the resulting photos here for your viewing pleasure.
01. Menara TM
02. Menara TM
03. Menara TM
04. Menara TM
05. Menara TM
06. Menara TM
07. Menara TM
Please feel free to check out my pbase gallery for more and larger pictures of Menara TM.
I once blogged about David Atkinson, an amateur photographer who travelled to England overland from Australia and while doing so he took many awesome pictures along the way. One of the pictures which became the cover of his website is the picture below taken in Padang Besar, Perlis circa 1970s.
Used with kind permission by David Atkinson
And recently I was shown a picture by Arthur Teng which he took circa year 2000. Below is the picture taken by Arthur Teng.
Used with kind permission by Arthur Teng
It was taken roughly at the same location where David Atkinson took his picture but Arthur’s picture was taken more than twenty years later. It is however pretty interesting to note that the landscape is not very different from the one taken by David. The only difference is the road has been tarred compared to the dirt road in David’s pciture.
Perhaps good photographers think alike and I admit both of them are very good photographers whom I admire very much.
Do you ever fancy becoming an audience at a photo talk by among the finest photographers in the world? Yes I mean among the finest photographers in the world not some Malaysian photographers who just started holding a DSLR last year and this year has started holding a photo talk showing half baked works, and worse they charge you to see his/her half baked works. Yes it happened in Malaysia but let’s not discuss it here.
The photo talk by the finest photographers that I mentioned above can be found at TED.com, an annual conference that brings together people from Technology, Entertainment and Design background, hence the abbreviation TED.
I have summarised and listed down here a selection of photo talks by world reknowned photographers as follows:
- David Griffin, National Geographic’s Director of Photography entitled Photography connects us with the world.
- James Nachtwey, considered the modern legend of war photographer and the winner of 2007 TED Prize. His presentation of touchy war photographs is entitled Searing pictures of war.
- Frans Lanting’s presentation entitiled A lyrical view of life on Earth
- James Nachtwey, another presentation by him entitled “Use my photographs to stop the worldwide XDR-TB epidemic”.
- Kristen Ashburn’s presentation entitled Heartrending pictures of AIDS.
- Nathan Myhrvold’s presentation entitled A life of fascinations
You can find more of equally powerful talks at TED not only on photography but also other topics.
Hope you enjoy those interesting photo talks.
Istana Ampang Tinggi (Ampang Tinggi Palace) is now seated in its permanent location in the Negeri Sembilan State Museum compound. This palace is surprisingly small unlike the opulent palace of our modern kings. Perhaps houses belonging to commoners at that time were even much smaller. This palace was made of timber with attap roof. Something special about this building is it was constructed without using even a piece of nail! All the timber parts were jointed together using the technique similar to dovetail technique. Its architecture is of course based on the Minangkabau architecture.
The plaque in front of the palace provides its brief description and its history until it ended up in the museum compound as part of the Negeri Sembilan’s priceless state heritage.
I quote the literature on the plaque here verbatim:
This timber palace contains an unusual number of finely carved panels and a pair of heavy sliding doors which cannot now be found anywhere else in Peninsular Malaysia.
The palace was built by the fifth Yang Dipertuan Besar of Negeri Sembilan named Yam Tuan Ulin who ruled from 1861 to 1869 on a ridge overlooking a wide expanse of ricefields and when it was completed the Yam Tuan gave it to his daughter Tunku Chindai when she married Tengku Muda Chik the son of the fourth Yam Tuan, Yam Tuan Radin. The palace stood about six miles from Sri Menanti. Tengku Muda Chik added some more carved panels and he and his wife lived there. The palace was later given to their daughter Tunku Hajjah who married Yam Tuan Muhammed. the seventh Yam Tuan, as his second wife. When Tunku Halijah died in 1921 it was occupied from time to time by other members of the family. But from about 1930 it ceased to be in regular use and gradually fell into disrepair.
In 1953 the eighth Yam Tuan, Tunku Abdul Rahman, gave permission for the old building which by then had no roof to be dismantled and transported to Seremban. This could be done because no nail had been used when the palace was first constructed. The central portion of the building was re-erected on a site close to the State Secretariat and was converted to a mini museum containing weapons and other historic artifacts made or used in Negeri Sembilan. The building has since been moved to a new site about three miles from the town centre of Seremban.
Last but not least here are several pictures of this awesome palace for your viewing pleasure.
The front view of the Istana Ampang Tinggi
Side elevation of the timber palace
The palace's windows
The palace's windows
The interior of the palace - its right wing
The interior of the palace - its left wing where the subjects sought audience with the king