Prosperity for All
William Jolly Bridge
Spending half my life growing up and living in Australia as a first generation Malaysian-Chinese immigrant, I almost forget the superstitious culture that was engrained through my upbringing. Reflecting on my personal beliefs and values made me inspect the place where I grew up.
Prosperity for All is a typological study of the Earth God shrines that are worshiped by the community of my mother’s hometown – the township of Jenjarom, Malaysia. Saturated colours of red and yellow has highlight the convoluted landscapes, with pineapples, mandarins and ingots decorating the surroundings believed to bring the community luck and prosperity. Historically the Earth God is a Chinese deity, however it was believed to have caused conflict with the local Malay spirit when the Chinese immigrants introduced the deity’s shrine. Hence a Malay deity (Datuk Gong) was replaced and worshipped within most Malaysian-Chinese Earth God shrines. Examining these shrine images made me reflect on my life as an immigrant – conflicting and hopeful at times, devastating and humourous at others.