Spotted! Odelia Tang aka Ode

Odelia Tang Wai Wan aka Ode, is a multidisciplinary illustrator and undergraduate studying Design Communication at LASALLE College Of The Arts.  A break from school allowed Ode to live the dream of fulfilling her artistic pursuits.

“I favour a black and white aesthetic and draw from concepts in math and science for my work. I believe that art and science are mediums of the human intelligence that should be united in a pursuit of better living. I discovered the abstract nature of art through the influences of mentors in various apprenticeship programmes including the Transmission: Lab by PHUNK Studio and The Noise Apprenticeship Programme.”

Odelia will be showing her new work at the Transmission: INSTANT DISTANT show which will open on 11 December at Art Seasons.

iNCH drops Letters to Ubin EP

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Singer­songwriter and indie­pop darling iNCH is dropping her new EP, Letters to Ubin on iTunes and other digital platforms from today onwards.

(from the press release)

Letters to Ubin follows her sophomore full­length album B umfuzzle, which was released in 2013; and sees a departure from the whopping drum and aggressive guitar sounds that have become synonymous with her sound. Instead, the record features playful electronic beats juxtaposed with the analog charm of a typewriter’s clacking and animal sounds ­ samples from iNCH’s day­to­day life on Ubin – all tied together by her iridescent vocals. The seven tracks take listeners on a journey through the island, evoking its drowsy idleness and quirky residents, marked with the artist’s own reflections of a simpler life.

“The experience of living on Ubin was deeply inspiring – Letters to Ubin lays out the barebones of an existence frozen in time, inevitably strewn with narratives of a digital world. The record is much more than an homage to the island and its hardened nostalgia; it’s a chronicle of my own journey of stripping back down to basics – musically and personally.”-  ­iNCH.


Embody by May Lim

We featured the work of  May Lim back in 2011. Since then, the artist/graphic designer started to experiment with the use of colour and variation in size. Her new series is entitled Embody and is inspired by a recent trip to Ireland. As of Friday, the series is part of a group exhibition at KEEPERS which also host the work of Mintio and Lau Eng Seng.

May about her new work: “In this series of small drawings, motifs of gothic architecture and anatomy are reproduced in red and green – the colours often associated with Christmas. They are arranged symmetrically and appear decorative, reminiscent of wreaths displayed during the season.  At the same time, the visceral nature of the ornamentation also serves as a vivid homage of the Christian story of sacrifice.”

Pop over to KEEPERS before the show closes on Sunday.


‘But Mostly I Think Of You’ by Candice Lim

Today we turn to Candice Lim to ask about her debut, But Mostly I Think of You, a book of twelve short stories wonderfully illustrated by MessyMsxi.

Candice: “The book is a collection of some of my short stories I’ve written over the years in my Moleskin notebooks. I wrote them to make sense of a particularly intense emotion, or if I came across a visually captivating image, or if I felt especially moved by an experience.

I’ve always wanted to publish my own book, having been inspired by Tim Burton’s The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy & Other Stories. I love the idea of how a few lines could delight, touch or move readers. especially if they could relate what was written to a little piece of themselves–feel that little tug in their hearts or stirred something deep within.

I started out this journey wanting to have my writings illustrated so as to add another layer or dimension to the reading experience. It wasn’t easy looking for the right illustrator–to look for someone who is not only an expert in the art form but also one who can relate to my writing and feel for the stories. So after a couple of disappointing setbacks, I finally came across MessyMsxi’s artwork and was immediately drawn to the quirkiness and intimacy that come through in her illustrations, and also a sense of polished restraint and refinement. I reached out to her and she asked to read my stories first–if she feels for them then she’ll illustrate for me. So happily she did and she liked them, so I proceeded to commission her to take this on. It was a wonderful experience working with her on my book.

I’m excited and happy that the book is finally released; it feels like a long time coming, probably because I’ve had some of these stories with me for many years. I’m also a little nervous because this book was born out of some deeply personal writings; now they ‘belong’ to the readers, so to speak.”

But Mostly I think of You will be launched on December 3, 7pm at BooksActually.

Six hankies for Good Sweat 2015

There’s a certain reverence reserved for a man who can take out a handsome hankie with a hit of visual interest in lieu of a paper tissue. Neighbourhoods‘ 2015 Good Sweat hankies, will help you make a fine first impression.  Made from 100% pure linen, each design incorporates a phrase favoured by six of Singapore’s top creatives.

沒有你 哪有我 by Kenny Leck, BooksActually
‘This is inspired by my mother and father. Like a typical family, we have our fair share of ups & downs, but I know that without them, there will be no “me”. Their teaching, scolding, tears, laughter, and especially their work ethic are my guiding beacon. Pa was a taxi driver and ma was a stay-home seamstress. Pa would drive his taxi 364 days a year, resting only on Christmas day, and Ma sewed everyday. She was paid per completed piece, and the more she completed the more she earned. I know they did this not because they wanted to be rich, but for their children to have a better standard of living. So yes, my hardworking parents in their humble jobs gave me a “road” & “foundation” upon which I have built my dreams. And I know my dreams can only be achieved through hard work such as theirs.沒有你 哪有我 (trans: “Without you I am nothing”) is also from both my ma and my favourite song “酒干倘卖无” by Su Rui, the most poignant part is “没有天哪有地, 没有地哪有家, 没有家哪有你, 没有你哪有我” (literally: “Without heaven there is no earth, without earth there is no home, without home there is no “you”, and without you there is no “me”).’

不怕路長 只怕志短 by Theseus Chan, WORK
‘I have learnt that it is important to adapt and work well with any given situation, especially when it is not to your expectation or in your favor. This will push you to use the circumstances to find other ways that will not be taken if not for the limitations or changes that have been imposed. This change can be for the better, I discovered. So when we are faced with problems, the question to ask ourselves is not how tough or long the road has become, but do we really possess the ambition to push on or will we simply give up?’

拿得起 放得下 by Tan Pin Pin
‘拿得起, 放得下 (As easily as one attaches, one can detach) is a phrase I find wise to remind myself often. A friend once told me this while trying to console himself after a breakup. I find this epithet applies to most things, not just to breakups or spring-cleaning, but to art making too. I am currently in the throes of editing a documentary I had spent two years collecting footage for. Some of the footage I shot is spectacular, I love it, but it is also spectacularly out of focus so the footage cannot be used. It has to be tossed. It is too painful. But detach and move on I must. If there is a bright side, ditching footage gets easier with time, like a muscle that gets better with use. Meanwhile, the film is formed by whatever is left behind. Art-making is a process of coming to terms with remnants of one’s initial vision.’

一見忠情 by Edwin Low, Supermama
‘The phrase 一见钟情 (Love at first sight) is like the perfect love story. It speaks of the first encounters between lovers in which time stood still. It is passionate, romantic, momentary yet eternal. However, while we enjoy entertaining such ideas, 一见钟情 is not always realistic. I replaced the character 钟 with the similar sounding 忠 (loyal), to remind ourselves of the commitment and sacrifices required to keep love alive. To love is to commit.’

不要浪費 每滴眼淚 by Carrie Yeo, The Freshman
‘This phrase is a line from a song that I wrote with Diya – 眼鏡矇矇的. The song is about getting lost in the struggles of life and losing sight of where we are headed to. There are always tears and sweat in life, life can’t be a bed of roses. Well, even on a bed of roses, there are thorns. I have also come to realise that I secretly enjoy the “emo” moments. They just make life fuller. So this phrase is a reminder that we should cherish and learn from every tear and every drop of sweat, and not waste the lesson or experience. In a way, it’s also a reminder that we can turn every negative emotion into positive energy towards something good.’

練習每一天 by James Teo, Ampulets
Some years ago in a crowded train in Taipei, my wife and I overheard a granddad asking his granddaughter to give up her seat to an elderly lady. When the little girl refused, he chided her gently: “這樣是不對的喔。你沒有練習禮貌啊。”(“This is not right. You didn’t practise courtesy.”) I remember this encounter vividly. I was struck by his use of the words練習 (to practise and drill). He reminded me that courtesy is not just an ideal or aspiration but is about practice. And like courtesy, many things in life, whether big or small, starts with this deceptively simple練習 – deceptive because simple is often the hardest. It is the practice of everyday living that makes us the person we want to be.

Each design is available in an edition of 100 and can be pre-ordered via at an early bird price of $38 each (usual $42). Each hankie comes with a limited Good Sweat 2016 calendar-poster and part of the proceeds will go to charity. 

Jon Chan on his debut EP, JAWN

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Jon Chan - designer and folk singer songwriter aka JAWN - has finally released a debut album. It’s taken seven years, and quite a few people have waited patiently. The EP features five original tracks that explore universal themes about love, loss, and life, and it’s as rewarding as you wanted it to be.

Jon: “It started small – a couple of songs I composed after getting dumped. I wrote them down, sung into a crappy mic attached to Garageband, and that was the most I’d ever thought to get out of it. Fade to Black was written in 2012, before the Noise Singapore apprenticeship to Sara Wee – and the rest arrived in all sorts of ways over the next couple of years. I started recording in September 2014 – with Roland Lim at SyncStudios, right after he’d released his stuff with Gentle Bones. He saw the potential in the songs, and we’ve been working together ever since. In this record, I’ve played the bass, a number of guitars, a banjo, a grand piano, sung, clapped, hit objects, and did many other wonderful things I was woefully unprepared to do. I’ve been juggling this with freelance work and the duties of a full-time undergraduate. I’m 25 now, armed with a freshly minted BFA in Visual Communications from NTU’s ADM. I can’t wait to see what comes next.”

JAWN is available for purchase on iTunes.

The lowdown on SG Heart Map @Float

(from the press release)

From 26 till 29 November, SG Heart Map will unveil the first-ever crowd-sourced heart map of Singaporeans’ cherished places at the Float @ Marina Bay.

Inspired by the stories shared, seven artists across different creative and arts communities, have created immersive and poignant works of art for the SG Heart Map. The artists include Gwen Lee, Kenny Leck, Michael Ng, Royston Tan, Tia Boon Sim and Zaihan Kariyani, William Chan  and Zul Mahmod. Stories of Singaporeans will be told through various art forms such as prose, poetry, a film, sketches, photographs, audio installations, illustrations and animations – to be showcased at the SG Heart Map Festival @ Float.

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50 First Kisses by Royston Tan and Outdoor Cinema
50 First Kisses is an emotive anthology showcasing 50 Singaporean couples and their most heart-warming moments, which took place at cherished places in Singapore. Set against the backdrop of iconic landmarks in Singapore, the film will take the audience through time, bringing back memories of sentimental moments in the past, while celebrating the success and modernity of Singapore today.

Wordplay! A Literary Playground by Kenny Leck
Led by Kenny Leck, this playground features 20 literary art works in the form of prose and poetry authored by a team of 10 established local writers. They drew inspiration from the SG Heart Map stories relating to the theme of childhood, covering topics such as kite-flying and the all-time favourite playgrounds.

Future City Vision by Michael Ng
Just as how past city planners have shaped Singapore into our much loved city today, Future City Vision by Michael Ng, founding member of OIC Singapore (Organisation of Illustrators Council), invites visitors to immerse themselves in the imaginative future of Singapore through the larger-than-life pop-up illustrations created together with some 100 students.

Darren Soh, Punggol Waterway Terraces

HomeScapes by Gwen Lee
Five well-known photographers – Ang Song Nian, Bob Lee, Darren Soh, George Wong and Robert Zhao will present the HomeScapes Photography Exhibition at the SG Heart Map Festival @ Float. Led and curated by Gwen Lee, director of the Singapore International Photography Festival (SIPF), the exhibition presents the theme of home with many untold stories of the common and ordinary in our midst. Narrated through the images captured by the five photographers, these stories range from those of Singaporeans in their living rooms and their display cabinets that curate their personal memories and life events, to scenery and façades of flats that illustrate the progress of our living environment, and animals found in Singapore that co-habit with us in our space.

SonicMemories by Zul Mahmod
Sound artist Zul Mahmod will showcase SonicMemories, an audio installation created with recordings that reflect familiar experiences at national, cultural and celebratory events, such as the crowd’s excitement during the commissioning parade for Officer Cadets or the joyful music played at weddings. They also include personal interpretations of special occasions that have taken place in the heartlands such as the Bedok Reservoir and Whampoa. SonicMemories will feature the mailbox – key in bringing people together before the advent of email and social media – as the centerpiece and intermediary to convey these cherished stories.

Scenes of Our Hearts Showcase by Urban Sketchers Singapore
From August till September this year, Tia Boon Sim and Zaihan Kariyani (Urban Sketchers Singapore) led some 400 Singaporeans to capture the poignant perspectives of life in Singapore through sketching on location around the island. From our quaint streets to the everyday city

A Beautiful Day by William Chan at the Dome
‘A Beautiful Day’ is a documentation of Singapore from dawn to night. Featuring the 50 SG Heart Map places, it brings visitors on a visual journey of the many places that trace the progress of Singapore story. The animation projected on the dome also brings to life the 50 SG Heart Map places contributed by Singaporeans and inspires the rediscovery of the beauty of our landscape.

(All images courtesy of SG Heart Map)

Anise presents Inward EP

(from the press release)

Earlier this year, singer-songwriter Anise took a journey inward, learning along the way how to turn feelings of anger and displacement into poetry, and to bid goodbye to the pain of the past. Having returned with a new understanding of solace, Anise presents her debut EP Inward, five songs of dark folk that pair off-kilter chords with tender lyricism – songs that are at once fragile and indignant, ominous and tender.

First track ‘Aoraki’ is a sparse yet stunning folk ballad, with Anise’s melancholic voice backed only by guitar and strings – a strong introduction to her songwriting ability and vocal prowess. ‘Bones’ begins just as austerely, but builds to a majestic crescendo, backed by a full band. The haunting ’Pulp Fiction’ combines soft-spoken meditation on the difficulty of human communication with wry commentary on censorship. In ’Midnight Sweepers’ Anise presents an almost apocalyptic vision of Singapore, and sings an ode to the downtrodden and the invisible who live in this country. The final track ‘Underwater’ is a disquieting and beautiful lament for lost love, and perhaps the most heartbreaking song on Inward.

Anise’s live performances have been noted for her moving songwriting, ‘feathery’ and ‘misty’ vocals, and her quiet yet commanding stage presence, which draws the audience into a cocoon of nervous energy and beautiful brutality. Her performances at Baybeats 2015, Esplanade Cafe 21, Ignite! Festival, and 100+50 Bands Festival, among others, have gained her a cult following, even though she remains relatively unknown.

For her EP Launch on the 6th of December at the Play Den in the Arts House, Anise will be accompanied by Kim Eun Hyung (Kindakid), Daphne Tan, and mainstay collaborator Zhong Ren Koh (Plate) on stage. Click here for tickets.

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