Spanning over two floors, SAM’s latest exhibition is imbued with oceanic dominance as the artists re-examine and redefine the idealised notions of seascapes and the mysteries of the aquatic unknown. Its theme surrounds the ideas of the origins of life, personal histories and identities, which the artists present through their own artistic interpretations.
Odyssey, which opened on the 4th of June, will be accessible to the public till 28th August. It features 11 contemporary artists from the region and beyond - including Singapore, South Korea, Indonesia and Pakistan. The exhibition draws its works from SAM’s permanent collection, artists’ collections and new commissions, in addition to loans from the Republic of Singapore Navy Museum as a reflection of Singapore’s maritime history as a seaport.
Introduced below are South Korean artist, Choe U-ram, Indonesian artist, Entang Wiharso and Pakistani artist, Rashid Rana, whose works you should not miss!
Embedded in Choe U-Ram’s artistic practice is his love for machinery and his belief that animation translates into life. Inspired by Earth’s underwater abyss, the artist created two biomorphic kinetic sculptures that motor to life with light and movement. Their Latin names and artist-constructed mythologies further the possibility of their existence as creatures of the deep. Here, the artist presents to us a world that is increasingly bound by technology, triggered by chain reactions from the environment.
Unveiling a new major installation, Entang Wiharso’s mixed-media mural work is an underwater “memory-scape” that combines personal experience with his country’s modern history. Along with that, the artist's presentation of vivid imagery and his persistent use of coral-like structures highlight and connect Indonesia’s identity as an archipelago, alluding to the intimate weave between civilisations, the seas and history.
Addressing more environmental concerns, Rashid Rana presents a monumental seascape of rolling waves that are made up of thousands of tiny images of trash and colonial ships. The artist brings the visitors’ attention to the wastefulness of our consumerist society, the damage of globalisation and the legacies of colonialism.
Odyssey: Navigating Nameless Seas is definitely an exhibition not to be missed as it allows visitors to re-align their perspectives and thoughts on our relationship with the Earth's watery realms - taking into consideration the responsibility of cause and effect.
Odyssey: Navigating Nameless Seas is on till 28 August 2016 at Singapore Art Museum, 71 Bras Basah Road, Singapore 189555. Open Mon-Sun 10am – 7pm, Fri 10am – 9pm. The exhibition is accompanied by a series of public and educational programmes, including artist and curator tours along with workshops conducted by the Republic of Singapore Navy.
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