Singapore’s Most Influential: Here Are Our Top 4 Women In The Arts In Singapore

March 8 is International Women’s Day!

Not enough is done to recognise and acknowledge women for all their contributions to space exploration, the medical field, the arts and every other industry out there. As such, for this year’s International Women’s Day, we celebrate 4 amazing women who have made their mark on arts and culture in Singapore!

Kumari Nahappan

A prominent artist based in Singapore, Kumari Nahappan is well-versed in a range of visual genres, from inter-disciplinary to painting, sculpture and installations.

Some of her more famous works in Singapore include Saga for Changi Airport, Nutmeg & Mace for the ION Orchard, Pedas-Pedas for the National Museum and Pembungaan for OUE Bayfront (the largest bronze mural in Singapore that’s over 45m tall).

Hi Kumari, your work has made its way into Art Museums and gallery exhibitions all over the world. How would you describe your art creation process?

As a conceptual artist, I create works in a series and often exhibit them in the context of space and time to communicate a story.

These works often make their way to the institutions or countries to be exhibited, where they are framed by the context of the art-making process in the form of an installation.

What changes have you noticed in the art industry today, compared to when you first began?

As compared to 25 years ago, the industry is vibrant and evolving, especially in terms of contemporary art, which is excellent for growth.

With more art fairs and events in Singapore recently, such as the annual Affordable Art Fair that invites people to see art as available for everyone, not just art collectors, Singapore is going through a wonderful change in terms of the public’s receptiveness and embrace of art.

What do you hope to see in Singapore’s art scene’s future?

I hope the arts will be sustainable in the future. I hope to see art, life and the sciences integrating and running parallel to each other, playing important roles to enrich the life of the being.


You started your education at LASALLE College of the Arts as a mother of 4 at the age of 37. What would you say to ease the minds of potential artists pursuing a formal education, but are set back by fears of their age, marital circumstances and stage of life?

I started my career at 23 and worked for 14 years as a space planner while teaching at Institute Technology Mara in Shah Alam, Malaysia. When I moved to Singapore in 1990, I enrolled at LASALLE College to further my education in Fine Arts. My background helped me a great deal moving forward.

Fear of age and circumstances did not bother me as I went in with no plans, just an ‘open mind’ to learn.

Catherine Lim

A household name for most Singaporeans, Catherine Lim is one of the most well-known and well-read literary authors in Singapore.

Having written short stories, novels, poems and political commentary pieces over the past decades, she has now turned her focus to mentoring the youth as they too pursue a passion and future in writing.

Hi Catherine, you’ve been a published writer since 1978, and a well-known political critic since your essay, ‘PAP and the People: A Great Affective Divide’, in 1994. What would you say is your biggest, proudest accomplishments to date for both fiction writing and political commentary?

The two kinds of writing were completely different genres, with different objectives and readership: the fiction was creative expression of my personal experiences and observations of human behaviour, cast in the form of imaginary tales, while the commentaries were my criticisms of existing social and political policies in Singapore, based on factual information.

You can say that I regard both kinds of writing as ‘proud accomplishments’. I was very glad that I was able to share my interests, thoughts and reflections with Singaporean readers, and to know from feedback that they appreciated this sharing.

While your short stories and novels are a household name in Singapore, you’ve mentioned that you’ll be focusing on a new style of writing. Could you tell us more about that?

Recently, I seemed to have shown interest in a third kind of writing – the philosophical kind that deals with large existential issues such as God, religion, death, mortality, meaning, etc.

Actually these themes had always interested me and been the subject of much private introspection. Some months ago, I decided to put my thoughts together in a systematic way in a book, entitled ‘An Equal Joy: Reflections on God, Death and Belonging.’

It comprises a series of essays on topics as diverse as my Catholic background in my youth, my love and pursuit of scientific knowledge, my thoughts on death, suicide, the right to die, etc.

The book will be launched by Marshall Cavendish in March.

What changes have you noticed in Singapore’s literary scene today, compared to when you first began?

Firstly, there is now more support and encouragement from government organisations, such as grants for writers, the Singapore Writers Festival, and campaigns to promote local writing such as the Buy Singlit campaign initiated by NAC.

Secondly, I have noted the many new young writers on the literary scene, who have impressed me by their contributions, talent and enthusiasm. All these developments are very heartening indeed!

Any advice for local aspiring writers?

My advice to local aspiring writers is this: Go for it. Nurture your interest in writing. Don’t be too hard on yourselves and think that nobody will be interested in what you write.

If you write with authenticity, honesty and passion, even if they seem trivial or too personal to you, you will come up with the kind of writing that will interest people.

Remember all true artists go through periods of self-doubt which they never allow to dampen their passion for their art. Art is hard work – the axiom goes: ’10 per cent inspiration, and 90 per cent perspiration’!


Kirsten Tan

Kirsten Tan is a New York based filmmaker whose works revolve heavily around humanity and off-beat humour.

Clinching the World Cinema Dramatic Special Jury Award for Screenwriting at Sundance Film Festival, her debut film POP AYE has set the stage for 32-year old Kirsten as Singapore’s up and rising filmmaker to watch.

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<p><a href=”″>POP AYE Official Trailer</a> from <a href=””>E&amp;W Films</a> on <a href=””>Vimeo</a>.</p>

Hi Kirsten, besides being the first Singaporean filmmaker and director to win that award, tell us about your biggest, proudest accomplishments to date!

I think my biggest, proudest accomplishment is really just staying on the path of filmmaking all through these many years even when it felt like there was no light at the end of the tunnel.

It takes years to cut your teeth on filmmaking and during that time, you do work that is low – or even no – paying for long stretches of time… [Filmmaking] demands a 100% full-time commitment and it really took resilience and, I suspect, a healthy dose of foolishness to keep on this path where there is no guarantee of any success at the end of it.

How long have you been in the filmmaking industry, and how did it all begin?

POP AYE is my first feature film but I’ve been working in film and making shorts for about twelve years now.

At NUS, I founded nu(STUDIOS) along with a group of friends and I worked mainly as a producer on my friend’s shorts. When I enrolled in Ngee Ann after NUS, I then moved into directing for the first time, and made my first short film titled ‘10 Minutes Later’. I’ve made 7 narrative shorts and 1 documentary short since then before embarking on my first feature film.

Dahdi was considered a relatively controversial film, touching on the Rohingya refugee crisis and Singapore’s stance on accepting refugees. What challenges did you have to overcome in order to bring Dahdi to life?

I wasn’t sure if I would get funding for the film from the Singapore Film Commission and had to crowd-fund the film via Indiegogo just to ensure we would have enough funds to make the film happen.


Interestingly, when we went to down to Pulau Ubin to scout for locations, we found the residents on Ubin suspicious of us because we were holding cameras.

The residents thought we were a part of the authorities or the media and were highly mistrustful of us initially since they’ve been hounded so much over time. It took a long time for us to gain their confidence.

What do you hope to see in Singapore’s film-making industry’s future?

Apart from POP AYE, local films are doing well on major film festivals – we had Apprentice and A Yellow Bird premiering at Cannes Film Festival last year.

Many talented young Singaporean filmmakers I know are working hard to get their debut feature screenplays ready for production. On a macroscopic level though, cinema as a whole can’t survive only on filmmakers so I hope that film and cultural literacy in Singapore will continue to grow as well… It’s only with the audience participation that film as a form and as an industry has a chance to thrive.

Any advice for local aspiring film-makers?

It may sound simple, but to any aspiring filmmaker reading this, I’d say – really, just focus on your work. Make sure you do everything and anything to get that script or film to its best possible potential. As a creator, your sole responsibility is to what you are creating.

Delia Prvacki

Romanian-born, Singapore-based sculptor, Delia Prvacki, has been adding flair to the Singapore arts scene with her ceramic, bronze and tapestry artworks. Spaces such as Chijmes, the Esplanade and NUS Museum have featured her works, which are strongly influenced by Singapore’s nature-concrete dichotomy.

Hi Delia, tell us about your biggest, proudest accomplishments to date!

It is the story embedded in the trajectory of my life: moving from my native country, Romania, to ex-Yugoslavia to be with my husband, learning a new language, starting to build a successful career as an artist, all along being a mother and wife.

Then, 17 years later relocating to Singapore – an unknown space, new culture, [with new challenges like] having to learn the English language, establishing a new studio and practice while keeping the family values as my top priority.

How long have you been in the sculpting industry, and how did it all begin?

I started working with clay as a teenager, in 1967. I was already committed to the arts, having interest in poetry, piano, theatre, and fine arts, but disoriented, due to limitations imposed upon all forms of creativity by the dictatorial communist regime at that time.

I found a refuge in discovering the world of ancient traditional art, very rich in my native homeland. It also suited my rebellious side, compensating for my physical fragility and petite frame, to persist in a field that regularly was dominated by males.

[caption id="attachment_23573" align="alignnone" width="975"] (Sculptures featured in the lobby of Fairmont hotel)[/caption]

As a Romanian-born, currently Singapore-citizenship holding artist, how would you say having lived in 2 drastically different cultures has influenced your art?

When I arrived in Singapore I [already had] a distinctive “style” and my body of work was already defined by my experimental and conceptual approach… My practice was within the ceramic medium and I was recognised for the merit of pushing the boundaries of the material, for its detachment from conventional presentation.

When I arrived in Singapore, I was fascinated with light, colour, vegetation, weather… that was an obvious change that inspired me instantly.

Once I began knowing and understanding the local heritage and culture, along with my admiration for the distinctive component of an ultra-modern, advanced metropolis, I found the whole new setting challenging and rejuvenating.

I became more interested in real problems facing modern societies, humanity, and mostly, I developed an awareness about the role that art plays in society.

What projects are you currently working on?

Right now I am preparing a solo exhibition with a large-scale installation at The Substation Gallery. It will run from 15-25 March.

[caption id="attachment_23576" align="aligncenter" width="975"] Patina. Photo Credits:

This exhibition is special for me, since it marks 50 years of practice, and is a recollection of my first solo show in March 1970. It also has a personal emotional meaning, since my first solo exhibition in Singapore was in March 1994, in the same Gallery space at Substation.

You have a line of art-pieces called Dulcinea, which are 11 pieces of art featuring 6 “breast cups” representing a woman’s development from adolescent to adult. I love that it is such a celebration of women’s experiences, while simultaneously fighting back against the resistance towards public breastfeeding. What can you tell us about your thought process while creating Dulcinea?

I must say that my work was never “figurative” and the idea to develop an entire production in relation to this very explicit representation of the female body was justified by the idea, intention and the whole strategy on its implementation.

I intended to have it as a pure “feminine” discourse as well as a functional product meant to enhance the living space of families, while emanating a message of “maternity”, of eternal beauty.

[It also held] a role in aesthetic education and contributing to public awareness about a very sensitive, yet, perpetual dimension of our human existence – breastfeeding and women’s health.

Any advice for local aspiring sculptors?

I think local young artists are well-equipped with information, knowledge and conceptual platforms. However, they need to spend time in practising and making a body of work that is not meant primarily for sale, but to invest their energy and resources in experimentation.

Searching and thriving for original forms of expression is the key in establishing yourself as an authentic artist.

A big thank you to these amazing ladies for taking the time to share their thoughts and experiences with DiscoverSG!

From the first spark of inspiration that led to the start of their journeys as artists, to their position today as strong artistic influences in the Singaporean arts landscape, these 4 women have shown us that the pursuit of creating art is a beautiful process.

For more about the movers and shakers in the Singapore arts scene, follow A LIST SINGAPORE. A LIST SINGAPORE regularly features and interviews inspirational Singaporeans in the arts scene, such as whose first feature film was chosen as a contender for last year’s Cannes Film Festival.

What’s more, it has the most informative list of arts and culture events happening all around Singapore.

A LIST SINGAPORE is easily available on both online and offline channels. You can follow them on their Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and even their Youtube page, or get a hardcopy of their monthly magazine that is distributed at SMRT Stations island-wide.

We hope you were inspired by this article to explore and persevere in your own pursuit of artistic and personal expression. Happy International Women’s Day!

Also, read These Light Art Installations Popping Up At Marina Bay Will Make You See Nature In A Whole New Light

A #TBT To How S’pore Looked Like 20 Years Ago – We Felt A Wave Of Nostalgia Looking At #2!

10 years ago, it was the year 2007. And the 90’s were 20 whole years ago. Does anyone else feel old?

From the 1990s to the current day, Singapore has gone through a tremendous change. Take a trip down memory lane with us through these 20 pictures of 1990s Singapore. You’ll be surprised at how different Singapore is now compared to your childhood days.

1. Capitol Theatre


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This 87-year-old landmark was first built in 1930, and could seat more than 1600 people in the auditorium.

By 1998, it screened its last movie and closed down, unable to compete with newer, more technologically advanced cinemas around Singapore. After 9 years, it was reopened again on May 19 2015. Now, there are movies as well as in-house theatre and dance productions featuring local and Asian repertoire.

2. Marina Bay Sands

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The area where Marina Bay Sands now stands was initially just a huge reclaimed land.

With plans that have been in the works since 1983, the entire Marina Bay Sands project took 34 years to become the impressive integrated resort we know today.

With the completion of the Sands Theatre and Grand Theatre, we are now treated to globally renowned acts like The Lion King and Wicked. Coupled with the ArtScience Museum, Marina Bay Sands has become THE place to be for everything cool, from arts and culture to shopping and eating!

3. National Library at Stamford Road


[caption id="attachment_22081" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Photo Credits: Ng Cheng Kiang[/caption]


[caption id="attachment_22082" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Photo Credits: Ng Cheng Kiang[/caption]

The original National Library of Singapore at Stamford Road was first completed in 1960, and for many of us, the place where our love for reading began.

On 31 March 2004, our collective hearts broke as the doors of the library closed for the last time. While we may miss the old library, the new national library is a sight to behold. Home to the Black Box, an outdoor garden and 7 full floors dedicated to the Lee Kong Chian Reference Library, the new National Library at Bras Basah helps to keeps our love for reading alive.

4. Bugis Street


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Our very own Singapore-style version Taiwan Night Market, Bugis Street was where we flocked to for cheap clothes and apparels after school.

With our miniscule pocket money, Bugis Street was a godsend for the blossoming shopaholics in us. Cleaner, more fashionable and slightly pricier, new Bugis Street now hosts even more shops, some are even air-conditioned!

5. Playgrounds


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Address: 28 Lorong 6 Toa Payoh, Singapore 310028[/caption]


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Back in the 90’s, going to the playground meant playing with kids from the neighbourhood, porcelain tiled dragon architecture, as well as bloody knees if we had the misfortune of falling in the sand.

These days, playgrounds are more avant-garde in design, with safe rubber-foam flooring. There is also a growing trend in inclusiveness, starting with playgrounds for children with special needs and special wheelchair swings.

6. Buses


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Decked in the iconic red and white colours of our nation, the buses of the past were stuffy, non-air conditioned, and dispensed paper tickets when you boarded the bus.

20 years down the road, we now see buses in different colours. Not just that, they’re also air-conditioned, wheelchair accessible and bus fares are now payable with cards.

7. National Stadium


[caption id="attachment_22768" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Photo Credits: Yu Khing Poh[/caption]


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The old Kallang Stadium was THE place to be for every primary 5 child a few days before National Day. Wearing red or white t-shirts to school, we were proud to wave our miniature national flags (all while digging through the goody bags for the yearly signature gifts).

On 30 June 2014, Singapore welcomed the new and improved National Stadium. An all-weather sports and events venue, it has a retractable roof that keeps out the rain and doubles as a huge projector screen. It even has a state-of-the-art cooling system, allowing for cool air at 23 degrees to be pumped out from beneath the seats. Partially powered by solar panels, the cool air is even environmentally friendly!

Having played host to singers like Stefanie Sun and Jay Chou, as well as the 28th SEA Games in 2015, the National Stadium provides a comfortable, yet magnificent stage for arts, culture and sports alike.

8. Sentosa


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Do you remember having to take a ferry to Sentosa island? Back then, we were easily excited by the wax museum depicting Singapore’s past, as well as climbing up the huge Merlion statue.

Fast-forward 20 years and Sentosa island is now home to a huge amusement-resort. You’ll be surprised to know that this island is no longer just for the beach lovers and thrill seekers.

Theatre geeks and concertgoers can enjoy amazing performances like Yellowcard – The Final World Tour at Resorts World Theatre, and the daily Monster Rock show at Pantages Hollywood Theatre at Universal Studios Singapore.

9. MRT


[caption id="attachment_22148" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Photo Credits: Calvin Teo[/caption]


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Back then, there were only 2 lines: Red and Green. More accurately, the North-South line and the East-West line. After that, you had to take a bus to get to your specific destination.

These days, there are 5 MRT lines with 2 more on the way, and 3 LRT lines. In the past, we didn’t need to refer to the System map when travelling somewhere new. Now, I find myself googling ‘MRT map’ very often.

10. Hard Rock Cafe


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The ever-famous Cadillac was taken down on May 16 2016 in preparation for a makeover of the Hard Rock Cafe. The 1961 Cadillac Series 62 Deville represented the Rock and Roll times that Hard Rock Cafe stood for.

Fortunately, Hard Rock Cafe is still rocking even without its signature Cadillac. With Kumar taking the stage alongside live music performances and open mic shows, Hard Rock Cafe keeps our love for music and comedy alive.

11. King Albert Park


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Students of Bukit Timah, namely MGS, ACS, Nanyang Girls’, NJC and many others will always have fond memories of King Albert Park (affectionately known as KAP). Many after school hours were spent studying in McDonald’s, shopping at Cold Storage, and eating ice cream at Island Creamery.

Closed on 16 March 2014 for its transformation into a condominium, this is yet another childhood memory that we say goodbye to in our ever-developing Singapore.

12. Big Splash Complex at East Coast Park

[caption id="attachment_22788" align="alignnone" width="645"] Photo Credits: Akitek Tenggara Collection, courtesy of National Archives of Singapore[/caption]

Before Wild Wild Wet or Adventure Cove, there was the Big Splash! Slides which were more than 6 storeys high. They were supposedly the tallest slides in the world back in 1977.

After 40 years of bringing water-related thrills to Singaporeans, the water park closed on 21 October 2016, and the land was returned to the government for redevelopment.

13. Marine Aquarium at Wisma Atria

A cheap alternative to Underwater world was to take a trip to Wisma Atria and stare at the fishes in the Marine Aquarium. Filled with exotic seawater fishes, corals and even tiny sharks, we would chase the swimming fishes round and round the 1.5m tall tank.

Sadly, good things don’t last forever. The Marine Aquarium was taken down in 2008 and the aquatic creatures were transferred to their new home at Underwater World Singapore.

14. Tang Dynasty Village


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[caption id="attachment_22756" align="alignnone" width="600"] Photo Credits: Lam Chun See[/caption]

Opened in 1992, Tang Dynasty Village was a literal blast to the past where visitors could visit a replica of the Tang Dynasty Capital in Singapore.

Featuring an army of terracotta warriors, a courthouse, geisha house, camel rides and a wax museum among other displays, this attraction was totally cool but did not come cheap. Back then, $30 entrance fees were not affordable for some families.

Coupled with the 90’s Asian Economic Crisis, it closed down in 1999, after a short 7-year run.

15. Escape Theme Park


[caption id="attachment_22791" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Photo Credits: Walter Wu[/caption]


Escape Theme Park made way for an expansion of Wild Wild Wet

Who can forget travelling all the way to Pasir Ris to race in go-carts, splash down the Wet & Wild log-ride and be tossed about the insanely fast Panasonic/Alpha 8.

On November 26, 2011, we said goodbye to Escape Theme Park as plans for the Downtown East revamp began. Wild Wild Wet was opened next door shortly after the closure, but it just wasn’t the same.

16. Queenstown Cinema

[caption id="attachment_22793" align="alignnone" width="800"] Photo Credits: Skyscrapercity[/caption]

A cinema right beside a bowling alley, not to mention a KTV outlet, this was the best after school/work hang out for Queenstown residents.

I remember coming here after dinner with my cousins to bowl, even though we mostly watched the balls enter the gutters. Closed in 1999 and demolished in 2011, the rubble may be gone but the memories remain.

17. Istana Kampong Gelam (now Malay Heritage Centre)

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The Istana Kampong Gelam used to be the palace of Sultan Hussein Shah of Johor in 1819, where it went on to house generations of Sultan Hussein’s successors.

In 1999, after the Sultan Hussein Ordinance was enacted and revised for the last time, residents living in the Istana were resettled. In time, the building was restored and transformed into the Malay Heritage Centre in 2004.

With 6 permanent galleries showcasing stories and artefacts that tell of Kampong Gelam’s historical significance, as well as new monthly exhibits, visitors are given a precious insight into our country’s culture and history.

18. HMV at Heeren


[caption id="attachment_22794" align="alignnone" width="640"] Photo Credits: Rob Young[/caption]


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Home to the first and last HMV store in Singapore, teens would flock here to listen to the latest album releases for free.

Opened in 1997, the 25,000-sqf store saw 8 years of music lovers pass through its 3 levels before closing officially on 30 September 2015.

19. Underwater World Singapore

The fishes from Wisma Atria’s Marine Aquarium found their way here and lived happily until 26 June 2016 when Underwater World Singapore closed down.

While the ‘bigger and better’ version, namely S.E.A Aquarium, held a whopping 100,000 plus marine animals of over 800 species, Underwater World’s 2,500 plus marine animals of 250 species was more than enough for our childhood.

20. A&W

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These days, ask most teens if they know A&W and they’ll answer that it’s a carbonated root beer beverage. Back in the 90’s, it was a fast food restaurant on a boat! Stationed on the Stewards Riverboat at the Sentosa Coastline, it was the only fast food franchise that felt classy as you chow down on burgers, fries and an A&W Root Beer Float.

Singapore’s Transformation

These 20 pictures show us the immense change that Singapore has undergone since the 90’s, and with the ever-increasing development of our country, who knows whether our favourite places will stick around in 2037?

Make as many memories as possible by visiting and attending events, attractions, and activities in Singapore. So start visiting and get your cameras clicking away, before time takes away more of our monumental places in Singapore.

(Header image credit: With Over 1,000 Stalls, This Year’s Geylang Bazaar Will Keep You Coming Back For More 

7 Classy and Cheap Date-Night Activities in Singapore This January

With the end of year festivities well out of the way, we can all take solace in that our lives can finally return to normalcy.

After emptying the bank for all those Christmas presents and New Year parties, here’s a guide on life hacking date-night activities this January without burning a hole in the pocket.

Here are seven classy date-night ideas that will go easy on the wallet.


[caption id="attachment_21373" align="alignnone" width="768"] Image: Gillman Barracks[/caption]

Held at the Gillman Barracks, Art After Dark is a highlight of Singapore Art Week which combines contemporary art exhibitions, live music performances and amazing food vendors in one evening.

The event will also see the launch of LOCK ROUTE, an outdoor public art showcase featuring works in the form of murals, sculptures and installations by popular and emerging local artists.

This year, local musicians Charlie Lim, Riot !n Magenta and .gif will make an appearance, accompanied by pop-up food booths from Park Bench Deli and Gattopardo.

When: 13 January 2017, 7pm till late
Where: Gillman Barracks
Price: Free


[caption id="attachment_21374" align="aligncenter" width="500"] Image: Marina Bay Sands[/caption]

Treat your partner to an experience that is out of this world at NASA: A Human Adventure. The exhibition is said to be the most comprehensive in showcasing space flights throughout history, with artifacts from the U.S. and Soviet Union space programs.

The public guided tours are in either English or Mandarin where participants can learn about some of the most extraordinary innovations in space technology and scientific achievements in human history.

The exhibition runs all the way until March and will be a great way to start the New Year by learning about the human endeavour in pushing the boundaries of what’s possible.

When: Daily until 19 March 2017
Where: ArtScience Museum, Marina Bay Sands
Price: S$15-19 (Singaporeans and PR), S$20-25 (Foreigners)


[caption id="attachment_21375" align="aligncenter" width="2048"] Image: Singapore Art Week[/caption]

In conjunction with Singapore Art Week, the Aliwal Urban Art Festival is an annual event held to celebrate the wonderful world of street art highlighting the talents of local urban artists, dancers, skateboarders and musicians.

Visitors can learn about the history of urban art in Singapore while ‘The Writers Bench’ will see urban artists collaborating to work on a 12-metre long wall.

There will be live performances from local indie bands Ant-Men and Disco Hue. Skateboarding enthusiasts can also head down to the Aliwal Car Park to witness ‘The Asphalt Challenge’, a skill competition featuring Singapore’s top skateboarders.

When: 14 January 2017, 5pm till late
Where: Aliwal Arts Centre
Price: Free


[caption id="attachment_21379" align="aligncenter" width="1207"] Image: The Fullerton Hotel[/caption]

While all Singaporeans will recognize the iconic Fullerton Hotel, many may be unfamiliar with its history. Amidst an ever-transforming city landscape in Singapore’s CBD, The Fullerton Hotel has remained a constant, witnessing some of Singapore’s history moments.

This guided tour will reset the clocks to 1928, taking you in a journey through time from the very beginnings of the Fullerton Building to when it hosted the General Post Office, became an elite British club and exquisite hotel.

Participants will get a glimpse of exclusive preserved areas of the building with its rich history and monumental significance of Singapore’s past. The tour ends with a “Heritage” local breakfast in the hotel courtyard.

When: 22 January 2017
Where: The Fullerton Hotel Singapore
Price:  The Istana Singapore[/caption]

Get a unique glimpse of the Istana this January. Held during the Istana Chinese New Year Open House, this guided walk will showcase the Istana’s rich and diverse flora and fauna.

The Istana estate is a vast parkland of greenery, with areas such as The Swan Pond, The Lawn, Japanese Garden, The Spice Terrace and The Grove.

The walk is conducted on an hourly basis between 10am to 4pm, and is open to the general public.

When: 29 January 2017
Where: The Istana
Price: $4 (Singaporeans and PR), $10 (Foreigners)


[caption id="attachment_21377" align="aligncenter" width="1372"] Image: teamLab[/caption]

Story of the Forest is an immersive installation inspired by the William Farquhar Collection of Natural History Drawings at the National Museum of Singapore.

The exhibition takes 69 drawings from the prized collection and breathes life into them through wide-scaping displays. There is also an app that will enhance your visit, making the exhibition an interactive one for all to enjoy.

The installation was setup by teamLab, the same people behind Future World, the permanent exhibition at the ArtScience Museum.

When: Daily, 10am to 7pm
Where: National Museum of Singapore
Price: Free (Singaporeans and PR)


[caption id="attachment_21376" align="aligncenter" width="2048"] Image: ARTWALK Little India[/caption]

From January 12 to 17, ARTWALK Little India returns with its third edition to liven up the Little India precinct, showcasing the area’s rich tradition through a variety of arts and culture.

Throughout the week, visitors can immerse themselves in art installations and live performances that celebrate the heritage of Little India. This year’s theme is Your Path To Remember, giving visitors a nostalgic journey of stories and memories through the medium of the arts.

The initiative is a collaboration between LASALLE College of the Arts and Singapore Tourism Board.

When: 12 to 17 January 2017
Where: Little India
Price: Free


For more updates and listings of events for your date-night activities, pick up your free copy of this month’s A List Singapore from City Hall, Raffles Place, Tampines and Jurong East SMRT stations. Alternatively, you can check out A List Singapore’s The Playbook.

Also, read Dying Art Culture? Nope. Here’s What To Expect During Singapore Art Week 2017

Dying Art Culture? Nope. Here’s What To Expect During Singapore Art Week 2017

Singapore is often lamented for being a concrete jungle, lacking in arts and culture. To all the naysayers out there, Singapore Art Week 2017 will reveal our Little Red Dot’s big artistic accomplishments!

From 11 to 22 January 2017, explore art exhibitions, festivals and tours located at various places such as Little India, Gillman Barracks and Far East Plaza.

With over 90 different activities happening during Singapore Art Week 2017, trying to catch each one might be tough.

Here’s our pick of the top 10 exhibitions, festivals and activities you must not miss for an unforgettable local art and culture experience.

Art After Dark at Gillman Barracks

An annual crowd favourite, Art After Dark at Gillman Barracks will be back this year on 13th January, from 7pm to 11pm.

Expect a night of incredible talent with live music acts, new exhibits by the Gillman Barracks art tenants and galleries, irresistible F&B pop-ups, and the unveiling of Gillman Barrack’s public art project!

[caption id="attachment_21268" align="aligncenter" width="974"] Peranakan x Star Wars made-in-Japan pieces that will be up for sale at Design New Standard[/caption]

One such exhibit is the Supermama’s Design New Standard, featuring a precious collection of “omiyage”, or contemporary giftware, made by Singaporean and Japanese designers and craftmakers.

Art After Dark x SAW2017
13 Jan 2017, 7pm till late
Gillman Barracks, 9 Lock Road, Singapore 108937

Contemporary Printmaking Festival

Discover the intricate art of printmaking at the Contemporary Printmaking Festival 2017.

Featuring local printmakers such as PHUNK and the Gentlemen’s Press, uncover a weekend of printmaking heaven.

You can even look forward to a Print Your Own Selfie workshop with Jackson Tan from PHUNK.

[caption id="attachment_21266" align="aligncenter" width="975"] Print your own selfie with stamps created by Jackson Tan of PHUNK[/caption]

Learn how to make silkscreen, letterpress and traditional Intaglio printing from printmakers themselves at live demonstrations and printing workshops.

Contemporary Printmaking Festival 2017
11 – 22 Jan
Open plaza at Capitol Piazza, 13 Stamford Rd, Singapore 178905

Aliwal Urban Art Festival

Soak in the cool atmosphere that accompanies Street Culture at the annual Aliwal Urban Art Festival.

Get ready to be wowed by impressive and renowned talent present at the festival, such as local bands Tomgirl, Urban Artists, and RSCLS!

Here’s what you can expect from a single night at Aliwal Urban Art Festival 2017: Hip Hop Block Parties, Urban Art faceoffs, Live Performances by Poptart, Forests, and Ant-men, live DJ performances, Skateboarding challenges and even Indigoism’s Barter Market!

Aliwal Urban Art Festival
14 Jan, 5pm till late
Aliwal Arts Centre, 28 Aliwal Street, Singapore 199918

State of Motion 2017: Through Stranger Eyes

For this activity, audiences will be presented with feature films where Singapore made an appearance.

While watching the films, you’ll be seeing the transformation of Singapore through strangers’ eyes.

Starting from the Pavilion at the National Library, audiences will be taken on a 3-hour bus tour to visit the exact locations seen in the films.

[caption id="attachment_21262" align="aligncenter" width="975"] Scene from The Wild Eye, 1967, where a director brings his crew and lover around Singapore in the 60s[/caption]

Site-specific artwork and works by Amanda Lee Koe, The Observatory, and more will be present at each location to further enhance the experience.

Afterwards, audiences can attend the talks and panel discussions held to get a deeper understanding of the appearance of Singapore in cinema.

Register for tickets
6 Jan – 5 Feb, 10am – 9pm daily (excluding PH)
The Plaza, National Library Building, 100 Victoria Street, Singapore 188064

Coupled with her book launch at One East Asia Gallery, she will be baring all with personal writings, news articles, and photographic work in chronological order.

Come for the tongue-in-cheek, colloquially funny artworks, and stay for the honest sharing of her growth and thought processes behind her creations.

RSVP now at +65 6737 1819 or [email protected] for the opening at 6:30pm.

Greetings from Singapore
10 – 31 Jan, 12 – 7pm
One East Asia Gallery, 15 Scotts Road, #09-03 Thong Teck Building, Singapore 228218

Wings of a Rich Manoeuvre

Made from over 14,000 Swarovski crystals, with eight wing-like kinetic chandeliers (each 1.2m long), and accentuated by LED light, homegrown artist Suzann Victor took 2 years to complete this masterpiece.

A perfect representation of the National Museum of Singapore’s authentic 19th-century neo-Palladian architecture melding with the modern glass wing, the artwork was designed to reflect light that shines through the glass windows.

They sway to 8 different swinging patterns as well, and can even form the shape of a dragon due to the customised electromagnets within.

No Regrets For Our Youth

Created by Singapore art collective DXXXXD, No Regrets For Our Youth explores the obsession with #fitspo and gym life that has proliferated in our society.

In an attempt to understand the relationship one has with their body as a health or vanity focus, DXXXXD has transformed Music Studio 1 in Aliwal Arts Centre into an artistic jungle gym.

This exhibit will feature sculptures in the form of common gym equipment, and may even offer bodybuilding and wrestling workshops.

No Regrets For Our Youth
12 Jan – 12 Feb, 11am to 8pm daily.
Music Studio 1, Aliwal Arts Centre, 28 Aliwal Street, Singapore 199918

ARTWALK Little India

Running for the 3rd year in a row, ARTWALK Little India is a public art project set in Little India.

Set to the theme of Your Path To Remember, audiences this year are encouraged to walk through Little India and uncover the memories and stories of Singapore’s past.

[caption id="attachment_21254" align="aligncenter" width="975"] Image courtesy of LASELLE College of the Arts[/caption]

There’ll be live performances, retelling of folktales and mythologies, as well as mesmerising art installations.

Art Stage Singapore

The leading Asian Art Fair, Art Stage Singapore connects art lovers from all over the world with the best of Asian Contemporary Art.

[caption id="attachment_21253" align="aligncenter" width="975"] Water Dripping—Splashing, Zheng Lu. Image courtesy of Zheng Lu[/caption]

The 7th edition this year, expect a plethora of artwork as there are over 20 galleries with art from 27 countries.

[caption id="attachment_21252" align="aligncenter" width="975"] Nestscape by Thai Artist Mook[/caption]

Get your tickets
12 – 14 Jan, 12pm – 8pm; 15 Jan, 11am – 6pm
Sands Expo & Convention Centre, 10 Bayfront Avenue, Singapore 018956
Snake by Gerald Leow, featured at Singapore Art Museum’s front lawn in 2013[/caption]

Curated by Khairuddin Hori, this exhibition will showcase new commissions by artists such as Cleon Peterson, Zheng Lu and Oanh Phi Phi, as well as Singapore artists Gerald Leow and Sheryo+Yok.

[caption id="attachment_21250" align="aligncenter" width="938"] Constellation of One, Kristen Berg. Photo courtesy of Kristen Berg[/caption]

One of the renowned international artists featured is Kristen Berg, most known for her captivating works at Burning Man.

For those of us who are unable to travel to Arizona annually for Burning Man, catch a glimpse of the experience with her sculptures at LOCK ROUTE from 13 Jan – 30 June at Gillman Barracks!

13 Jan – 30 June
Gillman Barracks, 9 Lock Road, Singapore 108937

Just writing this compilation is making us excited for the launch of Singapore Art Week 2017! Best of all, a number of these art exhibitions and installations will be around for an extended period of time, perfect for those of us with busy schedules.

A List Singapore – Your Guide To The Arts And Culture Scene In Singapore

With only 10 out of over 90 art and culture activities recommended in this article, we understand if you are feeling some FOMO (Fear of Missing Out)?

Whether you would like to read up on the other 80 activities or plan your weekend around the art exhibitions, why not follow A List Singapore for an in-depth guide on Singapore Art Week 2017?

As Singapore’s first full-fledged arts and culture guide, you can find comprehensive event listings from music to dance, visual arts to theatre, and literary to family activities.

Besides event listings, you can also be updated with the arts and culture scene with their plethora of thought-provoking articles.

With a Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and even a Youtube page, you can follow A List Singapore on all your favourite platforms and never fear missing out on the local art scene.

If you love the smell of a fresh magazine, keep a look out on their social media channels for when their January hard copy issue will be distributed at SMRT Stations island-wide!

This Singapore Art Week, embark on a meaningful and reflective journey as you appreciate the arts and culture scene. The amazing talent in our sunny island may just wow you.

Also, read Into The Looking Glass: A Local Exhibition You Must Not Miss!

Into The Looking Glass: A Local Exhibition You Must Not Miss!

If you haven’t heard, the Singapore Biennale is in town right now, as part of Singapore Art Week 2017!

From now till 26 February, grab your friends and family and attend this eye-opening arts exhibition. We visited Project Dreamcatchers 2016: Into The Looking Glass and it was a rewarding experience.

Project Dreamcatchers 2016: Into The Looking Glass

Project Dreamcatchers is an initiative to help youths with chronic illnesses express their aspirations through art. Despite the many odds these youths face, they soldier on and reveal their struggles through the art they produce.

[caption id="attachment_21042" align="aligncenter" width="1600"] Into The Looking Glass exhibition[/caption]

This year, the exhibition at the Singapore Biennale is called ‘Into The Looking Glass’. Aptly named, this exhibition invites visitors to see the world through the artists’ eyes. ‘Into The Looking Glass’ certainly caught our eyes with its display of vulnerability and invitations to connect with its viewers.

Here are four reasons why you should drop by!

Support Local Artists

These budding local artists are partnered with mentors who guide and help them through the production of their art pieces.

Mentors include local artists Samantha Lo, Ho Wai Kit, Noor Iskandar and Tan Jia Hui, who worked closely with the youths to bring their messages to life through art.

[caption id="attachment_21045" align="aligncenter" width="1600"] By Sophie Arinie, titled Heart’s Rosary Night. If we just focus on the brighter side of ourselves, we will see ourselves soaring in this wonderful voyage.[/caption]

Sparked by the initial question of what they wish to tell the public, these artworks are personal messages from the youths.

A Stunning Array of Unique Artwork

The artists and youths used mixed mediums and materials ranging from mirrors to plants. They were chosen carefully to best represent the artist’s journey and message, and to elicit the desired response from the viewer.

[caption id="attachment_21040" align="aligncenter" width="2752"] These three jars represent Faith, Fear, and Freedom respectively. The messages on the jars show how the artists interpret, express and reconcile the emotions within them.[/caption]

While touching the artwork is not permitted, viewers can interact with the artworks in different ways, like seeing themselves in the reflections of Rayna’s art piece.

[caption id="attachment_21047" align="aligncenter" width="2300"] Rayna Tan explains that her art piece depicts the notion of self-image through the journey of life, with each face representing a turning point in the author’s life, and in her journey towards recovery.[/caption]

From this, we can better experience and appreciate the depiction of the artists’ personal journey through life.

Touching Stories

Accompanying each art piece is a personal message by the artist about the inspiration behind their artwork.

[caption id="attachment_21043" align="aligncenter" width="1200"] By Sarah Tan, titled Imperfect.[/caption]

Titled ‘Imperfect’, this plywood art piece was painted over with acrylic paint, and the words were scratched out using pigment ink.

Her words of truth, as of those of the other artists, come from a yearning to be heard, recognised and understood.

End Discrimination

Art is an expression of oneself, and a means throughout history of breaking down barriers. When we take the step to understand and look from the perspectives of these youths, we’re helping to end the discrimination they face.

[caption id="attachment_21049" align="aligncenter" width="2400"] By Toh Keat Siang, titled HEART.[/caption]

In this art piece, items essential to the artist are put together and held up. When light is projected on these items, a silhouette of a human heart is formed.

Syringes and tablets may not be our essential items, but Toh’s art piece reminds us that we’re all the same inside.

With ‘Into The Looking Glass’, visitors stand to appreciate and support the fight against the discrimination of our youths. Listen to their stories through their art and acknowledge the difficulties they face, and their creativity and presence.

In our ever-increasing world of connectivity, it is exhibitions like Into The Looking Glass that will truly connect us with others on a deeper level.

Disconnect from the bombardment of stories and listen to individual ones by our local youths and artists.

A List Singapore – Your Guide To The Arts And Culture Scene In Singapore

If this exhibition has ignited a desire in you to attend more of such arts and culture happenings in Singapore, why not follow A List Singapore?

As Singapore’s first full-fledged arts and culture guide, you can find comprehensive event listings from music to dance, visual arts to theatre, and literary to family activities. Besides event listings, you can also be updated to the arts and culture scene with their plethora of thought-provoking articles.

[caption id="attachment_21041" align="aligncenter" width="945"] Singapore’s talented actress – Oon Shu An with the various Singapore Art Week 2017 events she might attend[/caption]

Be in the know as they feature up-and-coming promising artists and the shakers and makers of the art industry.

For the latest arts & cultural events happening in Singapore, follow them on their Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

If you love the smell of a fresh magazine, keep a look out on their social media channels for when their January hard copy issue will be distributed at SMRT Stations island-wide!

Take the step to explore the rich and rewarding art and culture scene in Singapore; you never know what you might learn and experience along the way!

Also, read 10 Places To Fly Your Drone For Amazing, Never Seen Before Photos Of Singapore!