Project Plug: The Barbershop Reading Project

The guys at BooksActually are a whirlwind of initiatives, and for that we blooming love them. This time they tickled our fancies with a banger of a project aimed at spreading the word of local literature to the heartlands.

So, how exactly does this work ? Culturepush reaches out to head honcho Kenny Leck to find out more: “We are seeding books from our publishing arm, Math Paper Press, at barbershops and hair salons islandwide. The team chose to target barbershops as people usually pick up magazines or books while getting a haircut. Our team has gone around Singapore for the past 2 months, seeding our titles in any barbershops which are receptive to us placing our books there. We pick out titles which are more accessible to the public so we refrain from distributing books with sensitive content. Our main aim is really to spread the word about local literature so we don’t keep track of whether the copies are still there or whether it’s been pinched by their customers. We are more than happy to have the customers take back the books with them! Right now we have seeded about 90 barbershops in Singapore and this will be an ongoing project for us. We aim to seed at least 15 to 20 barbershops a month and hopefully have MPP titles readily available in barbershops and hair salons island wide.”

Exhibition: We’re only inhuman

What makes a good villain? The best villains are the ones that bring out the evil in you. They make you want to do horrible things to them. They rouse your inner villain. So here’s the big question. How are villains made? Chemical X? Chromosome X? Or maybe some History X.

In conjunction with the Singapore Toy, Game and Comic Convention, expect to have the lines between good and evil not only blurred, but defined through a series of works that are more than meets the eye.

The brainchild of four individuals who met in the advertising industry, this exhibition promises to challenge your perspective on infamous icons. In collaboration with Elena Teh, Hebert Pradjaja, and Theng Lim, PixelPastry aims to intrigue with an alternate view on the ones we love to hate – super villains. After all, if people aren’t one-dimensional, why should their stories be?

31 August – 1 September, 10am – 8pm at Marina Bay Sands, Sands Expo and Convention Center Level 1.

Project Plug: The Makers’ Journal

The nicely curated makers marketplace HAYSTAKT – an e-destination housing carefully chosen, well-designed, quality goods from independent makers – is now supplemented by a monthly online-only publication – The Makers’ Journal – looking at Making in Asia, with a focus on people, product, and process.

“In our inaugural issue, we set out on a journey to define maker. The task saw us travelling to Japan to bring you an interview about the craft difference with terrarium maker Daisuke Tsumanuma, while learning about the importance of tea drinking. Stopping over in Bangkok, we uncover Talad Rot Fai through our lens, an industrial-themed marketplace (and probably one of the city’s best kept secrets). Back home on our sunny shores, we attend a beautiful exhibition by our friends from The Workshop Gallery, and learn about the art of crafting an online memory experience with the State of Buildings. Last but not least, we take some quiet time off to reflect with designer Melvyn Ong.”

These guys know where the talent is.

“MoonGrazing” with the OIC at the Night Festival


Set to an original piece of music by Affixen, MoonGrazing is a surrealistic abstract animation that playfully explores the moon and its stories through the eyes of the illustrators and friends from OIC Singapore.

On August 30 and 31 between 7pm and 2 am, the façade of the National Museum of Singapore will be transformed into a canvas for local artists to showcase their playful creativity.

To add to the spontaneity of the moment, indie musicians Affixen and Andy Yang will jam together live at 7.30pm and at 11.30pm on both nights, accompanied by an illustrated video projection. At 8.15pm and 11pm – again on both nights – the OIC illustrators will be drawing live to a special studio recorded variation of the soundtrack composed by Affixen and Andy Yang.

Each performance is unique as lines of music and drawing meet and improvisations happen on the most random note.

We can’t ruddy wait!

Spotted! Juria Toramae

We stumbled across this young photographer’s work at 8Q. At that time we didn’t know diddly squat about who Juria Toramae was or where she was from. What we do know is she’s a crafty photographer mentored by Ernest Goh as part of the Noise TAP program.

For her Temporality project, Juria turned her talents on exploring the role of collective memory in the construction of a sense of identity and belonging. “Growing up in many countries has led me to think more about the significance of one’s identity in relation to where one belongs. Across Singapore, people are documenting and collecting snapshots of life and society that is perpetually shifting. Using the sea as a social constant, I wove photographic relics with new visual memories to build recurring narratives – family, play, commerce – to make the past less foreign.”

Juria grew up in Morocco and lived in Egypt, Malaysia and Thailand before moving to Singapore 3.5 half years ago.

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