“I came across the wordplay ‘strong work ethic’ on a T-shirt at the Chatuchak Market in Bangkok a while ago,” says 27-year-old Mark Teo. “It was one of those moments when you recognize something and it makes sense to you.” His self-reflecting statement might not immediately strike a chord, with the audience but the work that resulted surely will.
Thirty of Mark’s photographic favorites have been selected and each image speaks volumes about his subject’s expressive nature. Featuring some of the most prominent local and international athletes and artistes in the action sports and street scene, Mark’s attraction towards the raw energy of these activities is evident in his works. “I don’t think there have been many photographic exhibitions featuring this genre here,” he says.
From the flawless turntable play of hip hop DJ Koflow, to the seamless dance moves of iconic local B-Boy crew, Radikal Forze, and the gravity defying aerial stunts of top local wake boarder, Sasha Christian, Mark somehow articulates each individual’s expressiveness through still photography. His images seem to create a sensation within his viewers, an indescribable emotion that his images are “moving.”
All proceeds from the sale of his works will go towards the Straits Times School Pocket Fund (SPMF). Mark hopes to raise at least $10,000 for the SPMF, which caters to youths from under privileged families. “It is apt that through this exhibition of works featuring youth culture and action sports, we also try to raise some money for charity as a form of giving back to society. Hopefully people will be in a giving mood, seeing that it is Christmas.“ It’s hard to argue with that.
Strong Play Ethic is on from Dec 18-31 at #01/02-05, 36 Armenian St., 6337-7535. Free.