Forbidden Fruits: The most Instagram-worthy spot of Rainforest Fringe 2018

What can you make out of this surreal art installation?

The Forbidden Fruits, an art installation of large woven fruits exhibited at Borneo744 as part of the Rainforest Fringe have been making the rounds on the Internet, especially Instagram.

Thanks to surreal lighting effects and creative application of different Sarawakian ethnic weaving styles and skills, the installation has been receiving many visitors since it was first opened to the public on July 7.

Forbidden Fruits, an art installation like no other

Adults and children alike taking photos at the art installation.

Looking at the project as a whole, it is a narration of the life-cycle of fruits from seeds to germination, from propagation to decay.

Each art piece was actually a woven craft made by several of Sarawak’s indigenous communities.

Altogether there were 60 uniquely woven ‘fruits’ making up the ensemble of Forbidden Fruits, a project which seeks to investigate the possibilities of expression through traditional rattan weaving, in order to restore that sense of meaningful in the modern context.

It is also set out to navigate the social acceptability and taboos as fruits when ripe is suitable for consumption but forbidden to consume almost at other stages.

This serves the question of why sex is still uncomfortable conversation to be had in public.

An art piece inspired by Iban’s ketapu tunjang.

For non-artistic people who might not understand the poetic message behind the installment, the lighting and beautiful hand-crafted pieces make great background for photo-op.

Upon closer inspection, visitors might recognise some of Sarawak’s woven crafts such as the Iban ketapu tunjang (a hand woven rattan headgear with several pointed tops), an Orang Ulu ajat (rattan basket) and bubu (woven fish trap).

Several half-finished rattan baskets dangling from the ceiling as part of the Forbidden Fruits art installment.

Ropes to give the impression of hanging roots, dried leaves and sawdust on the floor add to the feel that you’re stepping through the rainforest.

The Forbidden Fruits is a collaboration between Tanoti Crafts, Ranee Gift Gallery, Edric Ong, Keynote.Co, Justlight Enterprise and IDC Architects.

Rainforest Fringe Festival (RFF) visitors will be able to enjoy this installation for free till July 15 before it makes its Penang debut at George Town Festival this coming August.

About Rainforest Fringe Festival

Returning for the second time, Rainforest Fringe Festival aims to bring the best of Sarawak’s music, art, craft, film, photography, food and culture.

Held from July 6 to 15, the festival is held at different venues in Kuching including the Old Courthouse, Carpenter Street and Pullman Hotel.

The floor is covered with wood-dust and dried leaves.
The Forbidden Fruits art installation is definitely an Instagram-worthy spot.

Patricia Hului

Patricia Hului is a Kayan who wants to live in a world where you can eat whatever you want and not gain weight.

She grew up in Bintulu, Sarawak and graduated from the University Malaysia Sabah with a degree in Marine Science.

She is currently obsessed with silent vlogs during this Covid-19 pandemic.

Due to her obsession, she started her Youtube channel of slient vlogs.

Follow her on Instagram at @patriciahului, Facebook at Patricia Hului at or Twitter at @patriciahului.

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