The fourth edition of Art Stage Singapore closed on a high. We bring you the highlights.
Top image: Mark Justinian, The Drawing Room
Last week, a total of 45,700 visitors – up from 40,500 the previous year – thronged the three massive halls of the Marina Bay Sands Exhibition and Convention Centre where the 4th edition of Art Stage Singapore was being held.
158 galleries from around the world took part this year, with crowds gravitating towards the Singapore and Asian galleries, no doubt indicative of the strengthening interest in art from the region.
As Art Stage Singapore Founder and Director Lorenzo Rudolf said during the packed media conference, “There is really a [growing] momentum for Southeast Asian [art]. And I think we can be glad that we are a part of this movement and also a catalyst for this movement.”
100 Names in Tofu by Chen Qiulin (A Thousand Plateaus Art Space) at the China Platform
He added, “Singapore is also becoming more and more a centre for contemporary art. Many of the local galleries are not [only] going to show you Singaporean artists, but artists from the entire Southeast Asia region.”
The work of Nobuhiro Nakanishi (Yumiko Chiba Associates) at the Japan Platform
Raining Bed by FX Harsono (ARNDT Gallery) at the Southeast Asia Platform
The highly anticipated country and regional Platforms – a new component to the Art Stage programme and curated by leading curators from Asia – also drew a strong audience. This was especially the case for the Southeast Asian Platform, which was also largest platform in the series.
Artist Sarah Choo with curator Louis Ho at the Southeast Asia Platform
Several projects caught our attention at this Platform, such as Singaporean artist Sarah Choo’s “The Hidden Dimension” in which she questions our daily routines through a series of films that show her family members engaged in trivial acts of self-occupation. Another is Filipino artist Mark Justiniani’s mixed media installations, which conjure a universe of flatness and depth, curious constellations of space and time that enfold into each other like a swarm of galaxies.
Mark Justinian, The Drawing Room, Southeast Asia Platform
Rudolf says that one of the reasons for having the Platforms is to create a greater dialogue between curators, gallerists, artists and professionals in Asia. Other reasons cited included allowing audiences to gain an “inside view” into emerging art scenes in Asia, and to give young galleries more opportunities to show their work on an international stage.
(Left) Universe of Water Particles by teamLab. (Right) Sounds of Ikebana by Naoko Tosa. Both at Ikkan Art Gallery
Elsewhere, we were also drawn to Ikkan Art Gallery’s booth. Here, Japanese studio teamLab’s “Universe of Water Particles” offered a dreamy visual of a computer-generated waterfall, while in “Sounds of Ikebana”, Japanese media artist Naoko Tosa’s showed a mersmerising video that captured the vibration of kaleidoscopic paint caused by sound waves.
(Left) Image of Chair (Father) by Uttaporn Nimmalaikaew. (Right) Detour #2 by Michael Lee. Both at Yavuz Fine Art
At Yavuz Fine Art, Thai artist Uttaporn Nimmalaikaew’s “Image of Chair (Father)” offered a haunting depiction of the cycle of life, from birth to aging to death. The works of Singaporean multidisciplinary artist and curator Michael Lee was also on show here, exploring the topic of space and solitude through a series of paper sculptures entitled “Detour”.
Bird’s eye view of the exhibition hall
Art Stage Singapore