It was a happy return for the Koboi, when on the 28th October 2016, I presented my Koboi Balik Lagi performance as a Biennale artist at the Singapore Art Museum. This is where I had cut my teeth as a Southeast Asian theorist and as a curator in the 1990s. Compared to my previous appearances at this venue, my mango myth presentation was a bit more of an enactment and less of an exposition. Still, for me, there is little difference between the two modes of performance. In fact, in the oral, tradition all speech acts are performative. In the mindful recounting of myth, the diegesis is inherently mimetic. The world is enacted in the telling and within this enactment, stirs the moment of its its very creation. Such are the workings of the oral tradition … the universal sacred tradition. Indeed, as Ananda Coomaraswamy has explained, ‘a myth is always true’.
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