How do we write a metahistorical romance for a renewed Malaysia? The recent change in government has opened the floodgates to new creative, dissenting, quarrelling energies into our public sphere. The rakyat after all is constituted by a host of colourful idiosyncratic individuals who have worked collectively and singularly 'against the day', to borrow a phrase from Thomas Pynchon's dizzying postmodern novel, in resisting the old order while concomitantly shaping new realities to come. What insights can drawing offer to this changing social landscape? 

We would like to highlight selected works by Malaysian artists whose practice offers new possibilities of drawings. They are often rich in narrative, performative, processual, and sometimes monumental in scale. The artists participating in Against the Day are Chong Siew Ying, Gan Sze Hooi, Jalaini Abu Hassan, Kow Leong Kiang, Minstrel Kuik, and Nirmala Dutt. 

Drawing was often considered studies and preparatory sketches but today in contemporary art, drawing has become much more than just a means to an end, it has become, for many, an end in itself, for its intrinsic qualities of immediacy and spontaneity. While it is said that drawing is the most personal of all artistic statements, these can also serve as documents of underlying large-scale social processes and forces that are roiling, turning, and churning in the shaping of new experiences and realities. This palpably present moment makes a demand for an artistic form that offers raw, unmediated, and accessible insight into the shifting inner and outer worlds of this imagined community that we call 'country'. Drawing can be argued to be a timeless medium that could offer new modes of representation and models of perception.