On my way to a dessert shop, I spotted this pretty ornate arch sandwiched between shophouses, serving as an entrance to the ancestral temple of the Cheah clan association. There were restoration works going on in the temple while I was there, so I skipped going in. Numerous delicate and detailed ceramic trimmings deck the beams and ceiling of the arch, each serving as a diorama of taoist mythology and auspicious symbolism. It’s plenty of fun for me to spot each of the tiny details as I look upwards at the structure.
I tried reading up on Fujian architecture, of which this temple arch is broadly categorized under, but there seems to be little found on Google. Much of what I’ve found details on Hakka architecture in Fujian province, but of course Fujian consists of more than just the Hakkas. I tried my luck searching up on Mazu architecture to see if I got any related pings, but instead I got search results for unique architecture on the island of Kinmen. Makes sense in retrospect considering this temple is not dedicated to the goddess Mazu, for which the people of Kinmen patronize.
All that online sleuthing made me wonder if Fujian architecture is too diverse a topic for discussion or if the internet has yet taken much interest in it. I think it’s pretty relevant a topic to dabble with, considering most Chinese in the region have Fujian ancestry. Yet we are barely scratching the surface on it… Well, appreciating architecture is not something folks this part of the world commonly do. At least the situation isn’t that bad in Penang, considering how structures such as these are being protected. But in Singapore, too many buildings are going the way of demolition for “progress”.
Picture taken with the Fujifilm X-T1 and XF 23mm f/1.4 lens.