ILHAM x SAM Project: 'The Body Politic and the Body' ILHAM x SAM Project: 'The Body Politic and the Body'

ILHAM x SAM Project: 'The Body Politic and the Body'


  • 8 Dec 2019 to 12 Apr 2020

  • ILHAM Gallery (Levels 3 & 5, ILHAM Tower, No 8, Jalan Binjai, 50450 Kuala Lumpur)

  • Tue to Sat 11am–7pm; Sun 11am–5pm; Closed on Mon and Public Holidays

  • Free admission

The safety and health of all our visitors, partners, and staff are of utmost importance to us. In light of the COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019) situation, The Body Politic and the Body at ILHAM Gallery, Kuala Lumpur, will be closed until further notice. You can follow and connect with us online at and on social media (SAM Facebook and Instagram). We thank you for your support during this challenging time and we look forward to welcoming you to our exhibitions soon.

Various bodies populate this exhibition: individual and collective bodies, physical and absent ones, metaphorical and fleshly bodies. Due to its complex structure, the body is able to assume such diverse representation with ease. It is therefore not surprising that the body’s capacity for the symbolic includes its potential for political reference.

Presented at ILHAM Gallery in Kuala Lumpur, The Body Politic and the Body explores the many facets of contemporary art and its genealogies in Malaysia. Featuring artworks from SAM’s collection alongside new commissions, artwork adaptations and loans from Malaysian artists, the exhibition examines the socio-political body of contemporary society alongside the individual, subjective body. Like corporeal bodies, the parts make up the whole, and the whole is present in every part. Just as each member of a community is a part of the collective, a community, too, is both one body and many.