Learning from her Kelabit elders, Alena sings, dances and plays the sape’ (a traditional lute instrument). Her performances are a sharing of these dying art forms.

Growing up in Borneo, Alena was surrounded by a rich natural environment, and cultures of many different indigenous cultures of the island. She is part Kelabit - one of the smallest ethnic groups on the island.

Borneo is ingrained in the person that she is. Taking this and coupling it with her travels, her aspirations, her battles and her questions, she strives to communicate her perspectives and ideas through visual art and through her music.

Learning from her Kelabit elders, Alena sings, dances and plays the sape’ (a traditional lute instrument). Her performances are a sharing of these dying art forms.

About the speaker

Growing up in Borneo, Alena was surrounded by a rich natural environment, and cultures of many different indigenous cultures of the island. She is part Kelabit - one of the smallest ethnic groups on the island.

Borneo is ingrained in the person that she is. Taking this and coupling it with her travels, her aspirations, her battles and her questions, she strives to communicate her perspectives and ideas through visual art and through her music.

Learning from her Kelabit elders, Alena sings, dances and plays the sape’ (a traditional lute instrument). Her performances are a sharing of these dying art forms.

Alena has learnt the cultural music of the Kelabit, Kenyah and Penan people since the age of six, moving professionally into visual art and music of this genre since 2013. Her artwork is inspired by Borneo today she finds artistic ways to present this traditional arts to modern public.

She is also a founder of ART4 Enterprise - a social enterprise that combines art, music, and social impact projects

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