Spotted! Koh Chaik Hong

from The Distant Land series (2015)

from The Distant Land series (2015)

from the Serene series (2014)

from the Serene series (2014)

Koh Chaik Hong is a year 3 photography student at the Nanyang Academy of Fine Art. His passion for photography came from his dad who gave him the drive to pursue his ambition. “My earlier works were all  about street photography, abandoned spaces, people and religion and culture in black and white. When my interest in photography deepened, I changed my perspective and style focusing more on landscape, nature and architecture with more conceptual thoughts.”

Koh started taking part in competitions when he was in secondary school and made it as finalist in the 2011 NUDE dignity from within photography competition and exhibition. He also received the Singapore Youth Festival Gold Award in Arts & Crafts Exhibition in 2012 and the Singapore Young Photographer Award 1st in Architecture Category in 2012 and 2014.

About The Distanced Land series

“In the name of progress, the ideology of modernization demands and justifies the domination of nature to benefit humankind alone. In this photography series, I photograph and observe places that are or going to be used for urban development in Singapore. These are mainly in areas of, Punggol, Sengkang, Tampines and other new towns. My question is that, is it worth to sacrifice the aesthetic experience of nature for urban development. Nature to me is a place for escape, beauty and inspiration. Yet nature has it’s danger, rough terrains and dangerous wild animals. Having accustomed to the comfort of living in an urban environment I felt more secured surrounded by human’s infrastructure. Ironically yet at the same time I feel deeply attached to nature. By taking a more neutral role as an observer in looking at development, I photograph my subjects from a distance. Showing more of the surrounding but at the same time giving less information too. I believe that an image should give a sense of imagination and curiosity to the viewer instead of being too direct.

Inspired by photographers such as Stephen Shore, Joel Sternfeld, Andrea Gursky and Alec Soth, they all have influenced the way I approach and compose my subjects. Hopefully through this series I will spark a thought in the viewer’s mind about the dilemma between the conservation of nature and urban development.”

About the Serene series

“In a consumer society like Singapore, people often spent their weekends in the city and malls, whereas some people venture into places to get away from the fast urban life in this country. In this series I photographed people who spent their weekend away from the fast urban city in Singapore. People inside were mostly foreigners and some local, they spent their weekends camping inside, fishing and foraging spending their times quietly with their surrounding. And the locals played with their speedboats and planes. Portraying them with their natural environment to show how amicable and calm. I also photographs the relationship between humans and nature mostly their surrounding that affect the surrounding. In which how humans adapt and sometimes how human behavior affect the environment in a negative and positive ways.”

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