Exhib! Void by Loi Cai Xiang

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Running until 20 August,  Loi Cai Xiang will be exhibiting new work at Chan+Hori Contemporary. The series titled VOID is a “ramification from his previous series of intimate spaces, and withdraws from the external (immediate surrounding) to the internal (self)”.

(from the press release)

The author finds values in personal experiences, drawing stimulation and empathy from nostalgia and sense of familiarity to visually reenact a mental scar or emotional blemishes. Beyond the soliloquy, the works also speak, with interest, of consciousness and awareness, of being and self, in relation to the masses.

Void taps into an emotional resonance from seemingly familiar spaces where personal emotional stimulation is present. The catalyst behind Void arises from a sense of intimacy and familiarity that one shares with the environment and space, and in so, rekindles experiences and memory. The spontaneity between the environment and personal experiences bounces off against each other, collides and interacts until a point of resonance is reached. Like an actor interpreting a dialogue, the paintings draw from personal experiences and first impression to interpret the environment and synthesizes new narrative with metaphors and stimuli into a palpable and stark visual poetry. This constant need to define a void that resides between us and the physical world is an attempt to make sense and create a synthetic connection to explain a state of being. This endeavor is a personal exploration for sensibility to define a private gulf that exist between my conscious and subconscious state of mind.

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I’ve Cot You by Zinkie Aw

In I’ve Cot you (Sayang, Sarong Baby), photographer Zinkie Aw sets out to document families that are still practising the cloth baby cradle in Singapore. She hopes that through sets of photographs made in documentary and conceptual styles, viewers imagine that slice of memory lane that we could never remember as a baby in the cot, as well as appreciate an old trend that increasingly gets labelled as archaic.

(from the press release)

Most of us used to be sarong cloth cradle or 摇篮 (‘yao lan’ cradle), also know endearingly as ‘yo-nah’ babies.

Were you one?

As babies, we could never give a testimonial, or recall that experience.

Via the ‘yao lan’ or sarong cradle as a cultural icon for interviews, this body of work focuses on family bonding, Singapore’s shared values, and ties in with a sense of collective cultural heritage via exploring memories of the family unit.

Sayang, the sarong baby.

The exhibition opens on 6 August and runs through 30 September at the Tampines Regional Library, Our Tampines Hub, L2 – L6.

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Kärsämäki’s Secret II by Trivia Goh

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A graduate from the School of Art, Design and Media at the Nanyang Technological University,  Trivia Goh creates works that are primarily produced in charcoal. “It brings out a formal tone in my portraiture of the imaginary. I use watercolour and ink as well for quick thumb-nailing and drafts.”

Trivia’s works tend towards “the whimsical, often portraying otherworldly characters and beings as if to document them having had a place in my casual daydreaming world,” she tells Culturepush. Her work certainly taps into the world of imaginary creatures and bizarre stories within Kärsämäki’s Secret II, a series that began in a little Finnish town in March 2016.

“Following my return to Singapore, I expanded the collection to include watercolour works of these oddities in their otherworlds. The idea was to contrast the works created in a foreign land against the ones created back home to show how the environment and the experience of it affects the outcome. Each piece offers the audience a little slice of narrative that paints the trivialities in my life.”

Kärsämäki’s Secret II opens on April 6 and runs through 23 April at Utterly Art Gallery.

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Noise Art Mentorship Showcase: Proposals for Waterloo

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© Fajrina Razak

Create a walkway of batik paintings.
Most of us know what batik looks like, but hardly any of us gets to see and appreciate it up close. Using imagery inspired by her ancestral roots in Central Java, Fajrina Razak will hang rows upon rows of batik paintings in the windy concrete plaza of Waterloo Centre.

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© Shahila Baharom

Build a space to consider loneliness.
What is loneliness? Is it the Singaporean condition? Do you have to be alone to experience it? Shahila Baharom will create a multisensory experience within a confined space for us to ponder these thoughts in solitude.

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© Winnie Yip

Represent both the change and the domesticity observed around Waterloo.
When you get out of bed in the morning, the folds of your bed sheets become the evidence of the movements of your body throughout the night. Winnie Yip’s immersive installation uses this domestic object as a metaphor for the tensions between old and new in the vicinity of Waterloo, which is the site of both traditional religious buildings and constant redevelopment.

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© Lee Chuan

Project the outside onto the inside.
How can we experience both inside and outside at the same time? In a way, scrolling through Instagram is one method – we see the world through our phone screens. Lee Chuan’s work combines the recent form of the digital screen with the camera obscura, a natural optical phenomenon that allows an outside scene to be projected on an interior.

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© Chan Jia Yu

Take over an everyday space with an everyday material.
We use plastic bags every single day. Is it still possible to see this material differently? Chan Jia Yu has been exploring the materiality of this common material – how it can be both light and dense, translucent and opaque. Her experiments have led to some magical moments, all using the humble plastic bag.

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© Cynthia Delaney Suwito

Observe the strangers that share the spaces in this building.
You’re waiting in the line at the chicken rice stall. You notice that the person ahead of you is wearing a purple shirt. The person ahead is dressed in blue. What else could you learn about strangers if you paid attention? Cynthia Delaney Suwito’s exercises will show us the small and absurd ways we can observe the people around us.

Opening on 19 January is the Noise Art Mentorship Showcase. This year’s edition takes place at the Waterloo Centre, where 12 artists will present 12 proposals, reframing the everyday environment between the residential and commercial areas.

“In between the shops, offices and HDB flats of Waterloo Centre, we encounter public spaces both underused and overlooked. There are wide-open concrete plazas and locked-up dead spaces. Architectural decisions made in the 1970s, then a series of modifications and repairs over the past four decades. ”

The exhibition runs through 31 January, 12–7pm at the Waterloo Centre. There will be an opening Block Party on Wednesday, 18 January from 7–9 pm at Level 5, Open Plaza, 262 Waterloo Street. RSVP to Su Pei by 11 January 2017.

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Noise Art Mentorship Showcase: Proposals for Waterloo

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 © Cally Tan

Weave carpets designed for residents.
Cally Tan was drawn to the stairwells shared by just two homes on the same floor. With a flower pot here, a shoe rack there and leftover CNY decorations, these publicly accessible spaces feel private. By weaving residents’ stories into carpets for these spaces, it’ll be as if their personalities are overflowing from their homes.

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© Kayleigh Goh

Explore the textures of an aging building through a painting installation.
How can you tell if a building is old? Peeling paint. Repair jobs that leave behind a patchwork of scars. These markers of age are built into the environment of Waterloo Centre. Using clay and concrete as her paint, Kayleigh will explore the delicate side of these urban textures.

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© Lee Wan Xiang

Construct a cave of illustrations inspired by objects collected from residents.
Lee Wan Xiang asked residents for objects they no longer wanted. She thought they would give her items they wanted to throw away. But along with old baby clothes, Genting hotel shower caps and huge blankets, she also received old photo albums filled with photos of loved ones, giving her a little glimpse into the lives of residents at Waterloo.

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© Nhawfal Juma’at

Wrap an existing structure in industrial black shrink wrap.
“I want to create a void, a space with nothing in it.” Nhawfal Juma’at’s proposed work is mysterious and monolithic. It’ll use a common industrial material to transform a familiar space into an otherworldly experience.

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© Tan Luo Yi

Transform a dead space with white netting.
Think of an enclosed space. Maybe that space is your home. Do you feel safe? Or do you feel confined? Tan Luo Yi uses ethereal white netting to explore this tension, creating an immersive space for us to reconsider the idea of home.

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© Rifqi Amirul

Outline a transitional space within a transitional space.
We spend a lot of time in transit. We might be moving between borders, or just across a corridor to get to the lift. We occupy these in-between spaces for small pockets of time. Rifqi Amirul will intervene in one such space – the void deck of Blk 262 Waterloo Street. Perhaps it will give us pause, even for a short while.

This year’s Noise Art Mentorship Showcase kicks off on January 19, and follows the theme “Proposals for Waterloo”. 12 artists have been partnered with a mentor to create a proposal for a special environment.

A structure stretching across the plaza, wrapped in black, a cave constructed using objects discarded by residents, a painter playing with the aging textures of the building’s architecture. These are just a few of the installations to keep an eye out for at the Waterloo Centre.

The exhibition runs through 31 January, 12–7pm at the Waterloo Centre. There will be an opening Block Party on Wednesday, 18 January from 7–9 pm at Level 5, Open Plaza, 262 Waterloo Street. RSVP to Su Pei by 11 January 2017.

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