Engaging Perspectives: New Art From Singapore

Engaging Perspectives: New Art From Singapore, an exhibition organized by the Centre for Contemporary Art (CCA) in Singapore’s new art center at Gillman Barracks, presents artworks by the artists Ang Song Nian, Black Baroque Committee, Mike Chang, Nah Yong En, Bruce Quek, Singapore Psychogeographical Society, Frayn Yong, Jasper Yu, and Zhao Renhui. The nine artists and collectives are currently working in Singapore. They are all born in the 1980s and at different stages of their careers. The exhibition aims to provide new perspectives about the everyday within the context of Singapore. The show is curated by Eugene Tan and organized by the Centre for Contemporary Art (CCA).

Engaging Perspectives: New Art From Singapore. Gillman Barracks, Singapore. January 25, 2013.

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The Centre for Contemporary Art (CCA) is devoted to advancing knowledge in contemporary art through education, research, exhibition and artist-in-residence programmes. Scheduled to open later in 2013 at the new Gillman Barracks art precinct, the CCA aims to bolster Asia’s visual arts landscape through creation, presentation and interpretation of contemporary art, while fostering research, discourse and cultural exchange. The CCA is a national research centre of Nanyang Technological University (NTU), in collaboration with the Economic Development Board (EDB), Singapore.

Gillman Barracks is a new contemporary art center in Singapore that opened in late 2012. It is named after British general Sir Webb Gillman and is set amid lush greenery and was once a stronghold to the First Battalion of the Middlesex Regiment. The conserved colonial barracks now houses national and international galleries and creative businesses, as well as the Centre for Contemporary Art (CCA) that will open in 2013.

Excerpt from the press release:

First public showcase by NTU’s Centre for Contemporary Art

Published on: 17-Jan-2013
Exhibition at Gillman Barracks features nine Singapore contemporary artists with talks at Marina Bay Sands set to challenge, broaden horizons

The Centre for Contemporary Art (CCA) is presenting its first public showcase in conjunction with Art Stage Singapore: an exhibition of nine Singapore contemporary artists at the Gillman Barracks and a series of talks featuring local and international art personalities at Marina Bay Sands.

A national research initiative of Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB), the CCA’s inaugural events aim to not only explore and push Singapore’s contemporary art to the forefront, but to also broaden horizons for Asian contemporary art.

“The Centre for Contemporary Art is still a work in progress, albeit a very exciting one. Art Stage is a major event on Singapore’s art calendar, and NTU is happy that it can contribute to it through CCA. This particular exhibition and series of talks reflect the vision of CCA – creating a vibrant art community in Singapore, bringing together the best of Asian and Western art, and engaging the wider public in discourses on contemporary art. I am particularly delighted that the exhibition is featuring the works of talented young Singapore artists, who have so much to offer,” said Professor Alan Chan, Dean of NTU’s College of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences.

“The common theme of this CCA’s event celebrates the integration of contemporary art into daily life. It’s heartening to see the steady growth of Singapore’s art scene, and we look forward to fostering partnerships with both private and public organisations to make art a central thread in the fabric of Singaporean life and culture,” Professor Chan added.

Engaging Perspectives: New Art from Singapore Exhibition

The inaugural exhibition, Engaging Perspectives: New Art from Singapore, features a roster of young, accomplished Singapore artists who were born in the 1980s. It provides an in-depth look at how these artists engage with concepts of the everyday and the interconnected perspectives about daily living within Singapore as well as the wider world.

Curator Eugene Tan said, “The artists in our inaugural exhibition prompt us to consider how attentive we are to the visible and invisible structures and networks that exist in our society, and how enormous an influence these have on our everyday lives.”

The nine artists and collectives, amongst them emerging as well as established artists who have exhibited internationally, will examine the diverse but related ways in which they engage with the everyday. Their works explore the physical structures as well as the invisible structures and networks that govern daily life, the relationship between increasingly urbanised environments and nature, as well as the systems of meaning making that influence the creation of images and signs that exists in society.

For example, the work of Zhao Renhui explores and challenges meaning-making through video and photography made during his three-month artist residency in 2011 at Antarctica, an environment that stands in sharp contrast to the Southeast Asian tropics. Debbie Ding presents her experiences and perspective of cities through various physical markers that populate our urbanised cities, revealing structures and networks that govern our everyday lives.

In an age of digital technology, Black Baroque Committee explores the physical act of image making through an analogue camera, and its relationship to physical violence. The collective stated, “We are bombarded every day with news about war and violence, and all this has made us become somewhat insensitive to acts of violence. This latest work builds on our previous ones by focussing on the mechanical and cold process of taking photos, which is akin to activating the dreaded guillotine during the French Revolution.”

Engaging Perspectives: New Art from Singapore
Venue: Gillman Barracks, Blocks 1, 37, 38, and 39
Date/Time: 26 January to 31 March 2013, 11:00am to 8:00pm, Tue to Sun (Closed on Mon and Public Holidays)
Opening Reception: 25 January 2013 (Friday), 7:00pm
Media Preview: 24 January 2013 (Thursday), 11:00am to 12:15pm, Gillman Barracks, Blk 37, #01-04.
Artists: Ang Song Nian, Black Baroque Committee, Mike Chang, Debbie Ding, Nah Yong En, Bruce Quek, Frayn Yong, Jasper Yu, and Zhao Renhui.

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