Gila-Gila, the illustrious satirical comic-magazine that ran its first issue in 1978, is well known to those who grew up in that era and has fans even today with the digital version of Gila-Gila‘s entire back catalogue available through their app launched last year. When the title first came out, it was priced at RM1 but now, the first edition of the magazine is valued at RM9,000.
The first edition of Gila-Gila is one of the 500 works on permanent display at the Malaysian Cartoon and Comic House (MCCH) at Taman Tasik Perdana, as reported by Bernama.
Apart from that, the exhibit also includes other famous satirical comic-magazines like Ujang, Geli Hati and Batu Api that were popular in the 1980s, and involves more than 50 cartoonists.
Cartoonist Mohd Safwan, better known as Pauh to his fans, said most of the rare works on display are contributed by collectors who were die-hard fans of the magazines.
“Publishing companies and cartoonists themselves do not own these collections since publications were manually at the time. When the house was set up in 2017, these collectors contributed hugely to its success,” he said.
Some of the artworks on display at the MCCH are from famous local cartoonists such as Datuk Mohammad Nor Mohammad Khalid (AKA Lat), Sulaiman Awang, Raja Hamzah and Osman Baru.
He said the house also preserves comics from the Japanese-occupation era, namely Malai Sinpo, Malay Mail, Syonan Times and Semangat Asia.
“Cartoons were part of propaganda medium during the Japanese occupation in Malaya, which lasted for three years and eight months, and this showed that cartoons were not solely for entertainment,” Mohd Safwan explained.
Safwan said MCCH doesn’t just archive these historical and legendary drawings, the house also serves as a platform for cartoonists to showcase their works and deliver messages on current social issues creatively, providing fresh and relevant content to the public.
MCCH exhibition manager, Tazidi Yusof said every three or four months, the house would feature new artworks with a theme that’s based on current issues.
Tazidi said the house is currently organising the ‘Cartoonists vs COVID-19’ exhibition that will last until 31 August 2020. The exhibition features artworks from Malaysian, Singaporean and Indonesian cartoonists.
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