Banner Shuffle! Binary Style Scarves

Santhi and Sari Tunas of Binary Style, are architecturally trained twin sisters, specialised in designing Singapore themed scarves. “Tiong Bahru, Bukit Timah, Botanical Gardens … our scarves are scarves with stories, Singapore stories.”

The Island in the Caldera by Lin Xueling

BooksActually‘s publishing arm – Math Paper Press  – announced the release of a young adult fiction novel written for 6 to 15 year olds. The novel, written by journalist Lin Xueling and illustrated by Stephanie Raphaela Ho, is about two sisters who are stuck in a different world filled with ferocious tree dragons and stinky giants. Will they survive? Buy the book for your niece or nephew and let me know ok!

“The Island in the Caldera introduces the sisters, Min Rui and Chloe, who are stuck in a dark, damp room. They meet Naga, who helps them find their way out but not before crossing an obstacle themselves. Both sisters move ahead to take on more challenges while forging new friendships. Through this novel, young readers can also learn about Asia, its history and myths, and even the different inventions by Asian scientists. It is the first of more volumes to come.”

The Island in the Caldera is available at BooksActually.

Let’s All Do A Little Bit More by Serene Khor

“As a designer and craftsperson, I am curious about the relevance of craft in our fast-paced society,” says Serene Khor, our next GSA graduate. “Being a scholar from Singapore Polytechnic and Singapore Institute of Technology makes me particularly inquisitive of the status quo and my role as a creative in Singapore. As the notion of craft seems to go against the very grain of how our society functions, I ponder on the values of craft and how it may remain relevant in modern times.”

Serene’s project titled “Let’s All Do A Little Bit More” is an exploration of productivity in Singapore. “Productivity has long been a challenge for us since independence and “Let’s All Do A Little Bit More” is one of the slogans from the Productivity Campaign in the 1980s. As a result of the campaigns, apathetic attitudes towards work and life in Singapore were ingrained and our drive to increase productivity plateaued in recent years. The series plays with all too familiar slogans to offer alternative perspectives on productivity, highlighting quotes from art critic John Ruskin on how we may work and live differently. Embroidery is a less than productive mode of presenting these ideas and subverts the definitions of productivity and efficiency in Singapore. Perhaps it is through less than obvious approaches that we find a solution to increase Singapore’s productivity during this dry spell.”

The GSA Degree show opens on July 8 and runs until July 15 at DECK.

Hari Raya designs by Suhaila Aris

With Hari Raya only a week away, it feels very appropriate to share this post with you. Perhaps you’re like me and are venturing – last minute – into the world of merchandise buying. Well, have no fear. Designer Suhaila Aris got us covered with a Hari Raya Sampuls/Merchandize Set, with money packets, cards and more in appropriately-themed designs.

“Living in a digital age, the designs of these money packets are unlike the usual traditional designs—as design changes through ages and time. The design aesthetic complements to the likings of this millennial generation, having various series that create a certain personality. Even though the design aesthetics are different from traditional ones, the important elements and characteristics of this festive season remain in the design, so as not to alter the meaning of Hari Raya.”

Suhaila’s designs are available for purchase here.

Our Roots by Jonas Liang

If the name Jonas Liang sounds familiar, it’s because his Kwong Wai Shiu Hospital project had press coverage in the national Chinese newspaper, Lianhe Zaobao. Jonas is our next GSA graduate, this time from the Interior Design program.

“Our Roots alfresco dining area in Tiong Bahru Hawker Centre invites the community to enjoy and connect with the vast greenery from the central garden and the mangrove forest canopy, which shades and cools users from the local tropical climate. These forms develop collective intersection of spaces, which was inspired by the mangrove forest ecosystem. Our Roots exemplifies the centrality of food in the Singaporean context; it explores the potential of a food scene as an intersection to connect the younger and older generations. Like how food drives an ecosystem, a vibrant food scene with multi-racial roots is the driving force behind this project. I have drawn inspiration from regionalist architect Muzharul Islam who uses intersections to weave basic geometric structures into a holistic space. I used basic lines to form webs of intersection and these symbolise areas of congregation.”

Jonas will be showing his work at the GSA Degree show at DECK. The show opens on July 8 and runs until July 15.

Concept of the Self by Megan Low

Explaining self-concept and its importance is illustrator Megan Low with her series Concept of the Self. “In an increasingly complex and multifaceted world, it has become ever more important to understand how we view ourselves. The term self-concept refers the collection of self-perceptions that each person holds to be true about his or her existence. If one would have a healthy concept of self, it would provide a healthier approach to dealing with life’s challenges. This work illustrates the meanings and importance of having a healthy self-concept in the form of editorial style visuals.”

Megan’s work will be displayed at the The GSA Degree show which opens on July 8 and runs until July 15 at DECK.

Of Real and Imagined Places by Crystal Teo

Next up in our GSA grad special is Crystal Teo. As a creative and design researcher,  she is interested in the ideas of place and self, and charts her findings through mixed-media works to speak of cultural identities.

Crystal about her project: “In a country where places and locations are ephemeral, how can one establish themselves within the landscape of this nation? Of Real and Imagined Places is a series of visuals that examines being, belonging and identity. Seeing the need to acquire territory as a prerequisite to identity, the visuals examine the connections between the geological, biological and emotional processes while utilizing the language of maps. This apparent nervous system made up of a legend of disorientation, serves as a kind of cartography for the human body; a search for identity. The map reveals a journey of reconstruction and change, a journey of discovery; never settling. It conveys the idea that this perplexity contributes to our identity and it is through this journey that we embrace the fact that disorientation makes us, us.”

The GSA Degree show opens on July 8 and runs until July 15 at DECK.

Perk Pietrek & LeNERD, Conversations on Turntablism

Perk Pietrek: “It’s not something that just disappears and become irrelevant.”

This is the final episode to a 3-part series of conversations on ‪turntablism‬, where we aim to learn more about the special art form via stories shared by Singapore’s top DJs. The wunderkinds, Perk Pietrek and LeNERD, talk about turntablism’s current state, and their vision for it moving forward.

Special thanks to E-TracX. Additional footage: Perk Petrel’s DMC Singapore DJ Championship 2010 routine, Perk Petrel’s Phuture DJ Battle 2 routine, and LeNERD X Koflow – Pablo (‪#‎TLOP‬) Routine. Music: Perk Petrel – Robot Lovin.

Mongrel introduces and reintroduces topics, through the perspectives of pacesetters. Led by a guiding philosophy of sniffing beyond the surface (bad pun very much intended), the magazine observes the inner workings of vanguards in Asia, and serves as an avenue for inquisitive minds to explore out of comfort zones. Mongrel personifies an alternative lifestyle for the curious, embodied by elements of art + design, culture, fashion, food, and music. With the video format as our main conversational medium, Mongrel focuses on encapsulating intimate moments, as we believe in sharing the story as it is.

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Culturepulse is a retrospective of the fresh-faced talents which we featured on Culturepush, and have since blossomed into established creatives-on-the-scene.