Organised by The Perak Women for Women Society (PWW), an exhibition featuring up to 250 much-loved items from all corners of the Asia Pacific will open to the public tomorrow (August 6) at The PWW Shop (upstairs) along Jalan Market.
Running on the theme “Tales of Collecting”, an exclusive preview of the vast collection of memorabilia generously donated by SeeFoon Chan-Koppen unfolded today.
The eclectic pieces on display comprise ethnic clothes, ceramics and silver jewellery from the Silk Road, in particular Tibet, India, China and Pakistan.
According to SeeFoon, these objects of beauty were collected during her travels over the span of 50 years.
During the press conference, the 77-year-old shared her lifelong passion for antiquities developed during her major in Art History at the University of Singapore thanks to her mentor, Professor Willy Willard who published a tome on the art of Asia and served as the curator of the university’s art museum.
She recalled trips with her professor to meet dealers with baskets of Chinese export ware salvaged from sunken ships around Indonesia.
“It was an Aladdin’s cave of delights, all that sunken treasure in plain sight, waiting to be bought for a song. While Professor Willard was buying for the museum with a nice fat wallet, there I was an impecunious student with barely enough to feed myself, paying S$30 for an early Ming vase which I still treasure today. To me, it was a piece of history, a period in time that will never come back,” shared the amiable SeeFoon who has called Ipoh her home for 26 years.
The regular donor of The PWW Shop continued: “That’s how I started collecting. My work in the hotel industry would take me to many countries where we were looking for development opportunities and what fun I would have wandering down narrow lanes laden with shops bearing treasures.”
“Currently in the fourth stage of my life, I have stopped acquiring while giving gives much more joy. I have treasured my acquisitions, enjoyed them and am now ready to let go of them for others to treasure,” she told the media.
With prices ranging from RM30 to RM8000, all proceeds will go towards PWW for their work in empowerment of the less privileged, especially women and children in the local community.
“I chose PWW because their mission speaks to my heart. There are so many single mothers and B40 women who need our help,” she highlighted.
Do take note that the items are being snapped up fast as quite a number of them were already labelled “reserved” or “sold”. The display which took a month to be curated will go on till everything is sold out.
Kimberly Tan, President of PWW expressed, “Our sincere gratitude to SeeFoon who not only donated just for this exhibition but has constantly been sending us her huge collection of costume jewellery, branded clothes, beautiful home decor pieces and exclusive handbags.”
PWW is a registered, apolitical, non profitable and non-governmental organisation (NGO) set up in 2003 to enhance the status and lives of women in Perak irrespective of their race, religion and social background.
The PWW Shop, an empowerment project of PWW, was launched in 2018 where donated new or preloved items are sold at a minimal price to raise funds to sustain its cause among others.
It is located at 15, Jalan Market, 30000 Ipoh and operates daily from 10am till 3pm.
The PWW Shop welcomes any donation of new or preloved items which are in good condition. For more updates, visit the Facebook page of The PWW Shop or call 011 6556 9715.
by Tan Mei Kuan