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Art Day Out: Gillman Barracks Celebrates their 10th Anniversary!

ByJenevieve Kok
Art Day Out: Gillman Barracks Celebrates their 10th Anniversary!

On 24 September, Gillman Barracks will be celebrating its 10th Anniversary! Ten years since the development of the space as an arts precinct, ten art galleries, non-profit organisation Art Outreach, and the National Technological University Centre for Contemporary Art will be commemorating Singapore's contemporary arts cluster with a host of exhibition openings, tours, and other programmes. 

A decade before, 13 galleries launched their maiden exhibitions in the area this time of the year, signalling the launch of a new contemporary art cluster in Singapore. Identified by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) as a site for the arts with its unique traits, the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB), JTC Corporation (JTC), and the National Arts Council (NAC) jointly developed the site to be an international destination for contemporary art. Now established as a distinctive destination where contemporary art meets colonial history against the backdrop of nature in the surrounding secondary forest, Gillman Barracks continues to position itself as a one-of-a-kind enclave in Singapore. Its presence as an arts precinct also saw the rise of other arts clusters across the island, pointing to an increasingly vibrant arts scene that has seen more galleries, museums, and independent art spaces pop up over the years. This milestone of the first ten years is a noteworthy effort by the various stakeholders, especially in a land-scarce nation with many other priorities to balance with. 

Scroll down to see some of the highlights! 

Mizuma Gallery

"Highway Interchange. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia"  by Ian Teh, 2022, pigment print on Hahnemühle Photo Rag Pearl. Image courtesy of the artist and Mizuma Gallery. 

"To the Great Race. October 2013. Agats, Papua, Indonesia"  by Silvana Sutanto, 2013, pigment print on FineArt Baryta paper. Image courtesy of Silvana S. Foundation and Mizuma Gallery.

Mizuma Gallery is showcasing "Renewable Coexistence: Silvana S. Foundation Commission Award Exhibition, 2nd Edition" from 17 September to 23 October. Featured at the Singapore International Photography Festival (SIPF) for the second time, the Silvana S. Foundation Commission Award recognises artists' ability to interweave environmental, wildlife preservation, and humanitarian concerns into their photography. The winner of this edition's Silvana S. Foundation Commission Award is Ian Teh, a British-Malaysian documentary photographer whose works are motivated by the environmental issues of urbanisation and development. This exhibition will feature new commissions by Ian Teh, "The Line of Least Resistance", alongside selected works by Silvana Sutanto presented by the Silvana S. Foundation. 

Exhibition Dates: 17 Sep - 9 Oct 2022
Address: 22 Lock Road #01-34, Singapore 108939

Yeo Workshop

Image courtesy of Wei Leng Tay and Yeo Workshop.

Yeo Workshop is presenting "View from This Side" by Wei Leng Tay, the artist's first solo exhibition at the gallery. Local artist Wei Leng Tay works across various disciplines including photography, video, and installation. She negotiates our understanding of representation and perception through the materiality of photographs and image-making, as well as social encounters. Having lived in different cities over the years, Tay sheds new light on migrant histories, memory, and the self through her work. She documents, interviews, and collaborates with strangers from Hong Kong, Pakistan, Bangkok, and Singapore, to unravel the complexities of relationships and identity. By reworking archival material, photo prints and negatives, the artist poetically conveys their individual stories and emotions around displacement, belonging and agency that would resonate with many. Her practice moves beyond mere documentation, traversing the politics of the time with auratic sensibilities.

This exhibition features Wei Leng's most recent photo works, one that had developed from a bag of family slides dated between the late 1960s and 70s, mostly taken by her parents. These old slides reveal a coming-of-age, charting her parents' migratory path through Australia, Malaysia, and Singapore. They depict how geography and history are imprinted in time through image-making. Through Wei Leng's reprocessing and abstracting of these images, she expands upon the codes of meaning that are embedded within them, presenting novel ways of looking and remembering. Whether it is an obscure inflight view of an aeroplane wing or a partially obliterated family portrait, an uncanny sense of familiarity is felt as traces of the past peep through. These works form the final segment of a constellation of works that Tay started in 2019. 

Exhibition Dates: 17 Sep - 23 Oct 2022
Address: 47 Malan Rd, #01-25, Singapore 109444

Ota Fine Arts

"Soup of Memories Served with Smiling Sunflowers and Bones" by Tomoko Kashiki, 2020, acrylic, linen, wooden panel. Image courtesy of Tomoko Kashiki and Ota Fine Arts.

On view at Ota Fine Arts is a group exhibition, "Traces", featuring three artists: Tomoko Kashiki, Genevieve Leong, and Guo-Liang Tan. The works presented here suggest the presence of a figure or traces of touch through subtle layers and occurrences. This exhibition looks at how each artist creates experiences that transcend beyond the physical limitations of their chosen medium. Japanese artist Tomoko Kashiki observes beauty and wonder in the minute details of life, and she focuses on reflecting this in her paintings through the postures and facial expressions of the figures as well as their surroundings. Guo-Liang Tan presents Figures I – IV (2019), a series of collages with layers of gauze fabric overlaying digital prints of images taken from everyday news media. These appropriated images depict various gestures of touch, which are made ambiguous by cropping and removing the figures from their original contexts. Singaporean artist Genevieve Leong's work attempts to visualise the intangible. Beginning with the immaterial, her work often combines text, image, found, and made objects, and the manipulation of space to create what she describes as "an almost physical image". 

Exhibition Dates: 16 Sep - 23 Oct 2022
Address: 7 Lock Rd, Singapore 108935

Sundaram Tagore Gallery

"Painting is - ALLVIEWS"  by Jane Lee, 2022, Acrylic paint and glitter. Image courtesy of Sundaram Tagore Gallery.

Sundaram Tagore Gallery is showcasing Jane Lee's new paintings in "Where is Painting?". The Singaporean artist's works comprise lush, abstract works that have garnered international acclaim. The exhibition is curated by Tan Siuli, the former Head of Collections and Senior Curator at the Singapore Art Museum. A three-channel video installation capturing the artist's painting process is on-view alongside the artworks, marking the first time Jane has invited viewers to observe her practice. The works presented are largely rendered in blue and white, a streamlined palette that puts the focus on Lee’s expressive, painterly marks. But on close examination, some of the paintings reveal tiny flecks of pink, red, and green among the layers of impasto. There is also variation in size and surface treatment, with large- and medium-scale paintings alongside smaller works, some arranged into uniform rows. In a carefully curated arrangement, Jane's paintings and site-specific installations flow into one another creating a playful dialogue that brings all the pieces together -- presenting them not only as individual objects but as a cohesive whole greater than the sum of its parts. 

Exhibition Dates: 20 Aug - 20 Oct 2022
Address: 5 Lock Rd, Singapore 108933

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