Interview: Samantha Lo (SKLO)

Art is very personal; it moves, it inspires, it provokes, it questions and it should never be defined.

I aim to provide more of a critical outlook. But I do enjoy digging sensitive areas.

Singaporeans young and old, heartlanders and city drones, changing landscapes, conversations, personal experiences and loved ones inspire me in many ways. There’s always something to spark off a great idea.

My influences stem a lot from Singaporean aesthetics, from Peranakan tiles to notices at bus stops and hawker signs. Sometimes, elements I am unfamiliar with pop up in my work; possibly a result of both conscious and subconscious accumulation of imageries.

There is way too much shit around.

I find the ironies and complexities existent in everyday life funny. And people who “like” campaigns on Facebook but don’t do anything in real life.

My childhood was great. I am lucky to feel nostalgic about styrofoam birds and planes, never having enough stationery from the neighbourhood book shop, little cases of arson at tiled playgrounds every lantern festival with kids from the block, cheap custard puffs and butter cream cake with a Ninja Turtle on it.

As a child, I wanted to be a dinosaur. A stegosaurus, to be specific.

I collect memories and dust.

I was truly happy when I saw the amount of support for my work, right after I got out of the lock up. I cannot be more grateful and moved, seeing all those black circles appearing all over Facebook. Can’t forget, won’t forget.

An alternative view on things that we find trivial, but yet reminds us that there is a larger truth that we can choose to seek turns me on. Twisted minds and forlorn hearts that pine for no reason—things like that.

My routine is pretty boring actually. I wake up, skip food, head to the studio, complain about the heat in the studio and finally get some work done at 9pm.

Sometimes I head to pool, the beach, or I get on my bike to chill out.

My idea of life has changed very much since my stint as a factory worker some years back, where life was just about having one job and one career in this one lifetime.

After learning that life is too short, I’ve learnt to live life for what it is. I think we were put on this earth to fend for ourselves, to learn to be human or inhuman. To open up an alternate universe of possibilities and make sense of deja vu.

I live to love, learn, and inspire.

If you have love, maybe you can have money. Money is a bonus. Mo’ money, mo’ problems.