Pair of outer gates

‘Pintu pagar’, literally ‘fence door’, is the Baba Malay word for a type of door used in traditional Peranakan terrace houses. A traditional Peranakan house is a long terrace dwelling with a front and back door, and air-wells in between for light and ventilation. The pintu pagar is a half-height outer door that acts as a ‘fence’ providing ventilation, security and privacy when the front door is left open during the day. The pintu pagar featured here is a rare example. It is finely carved and has gilt on both sides which is unsual as most pintu pagar are carved only on one side. It also has a curved top, a style which was very popular in Singapore. This example is carved with an eclectic mix of Chinese and European motifs consisting of lions, flowers, squirrels and vases. Such finely carved and ornate pintu pagar served as symbols of wealth for rich Peranakan families, visible to all visitors.

Indigenous Name
Pintu pagar
Late 19th-early 20th centuries
Object size: H220 x W114 x D10 cm
Accession No.
Collection of
Asian Civilisations Museum

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