The artistic practices of Singapore’s post-independence era may not be widely discussed, but all that is about to change at National Gallery Singapore’s new exhibition.
Opening May 7, Something New Must Turn Up spotlights six post-independence Singaporean artists including Chng Seok Tin, Goh Beng Kwan, Jaafar Latiff, Lin Hsin Hsin, Mohammad Din Mohammad and Eng Tow.
Referencing a quote by celebrated local artist Ho Ho Ying, the exhibition name calls upon the need for new artworks in a post-independence Singapore, which are now on display in the Singtel Special Exhibition Gallery.
Here, the exhibition spans three separate spaces, with each holding two solo presentations.
First, there’s Gallery A that features Chng Seok Tin: Drawn Through a Press and Mohammad Din Mohammad: The Mistaken Ancestor. Both displays explore how the artists drew upon spiritual and non-Western knowledge systems in conceptualising their art. While Chng took inspiration from Buddhism and an ancient Chinese divination text, I-Ching; Mohammad created innovative approaches to paintings and installations in order to address the spiritual ailments arising from the struggles of urban life.
Then head over to Gallery B for Goh Beng Kwan: Nervous City and Eng Tow – The Sixth Sense. Key highlights include Goh’s Urban Renewal painting series, which documents the architectural changes to Singapore’s urban landscape; as well as Eng’s meditative works, which require viewers to slow down and observe minute details.
Finally, check out Gallery C for Jaafar Latiff: In The Time of Textile and Lin Hsin Hsin @ Speed of Thought. As the pair often utilise technology in their artistic practices, it makes sense seeing them together—emphasising the move towards automation and computerisation in Singapore during the 1980s.
Admission to Something New Must Turn Up is free for all Singaporeans. So the next time you’re in the mood to discuss contemporary art and Singapore’s post-independence era, pop on over to National Gallery Singapore.
More information available here.