After about hundreds of email exchanges, twenty individual chats, five group chats, a few coffee sessions and two dinners, the Clang Mentorship Program 2011 has come to an end this August.
I have asked each mentee to submit a series of work and their artist statements. I have also invited five notable industry experts to each pick a winner. They are (in alphabetical order):
1) AeLi Park, Agent / theCollectiveShift
2) Amelia Abdullahsani, Co-Founder / Lu Magnus
3) Cindy Rivet, Senior Partner, Manager of Art Buying / Ogilvy & Mather
4) Gwen Lee, Director / 2902 Gallery
5) Jae Choi, Managing Director / theCollectiveShift
The public is also encouraged to cast their votes. You can either write the name of the mentee at the comment section below, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org by Sept 16 (Fri), 11:59pm EST.
Please only submit one name once. Results will be announced before Oct 3, together with next year’s call for submission.
The name with the most public votes will constitute one “vote”, making it a total of 6 votes. Winner will receive a grant of up to $1,000 from Clang to produce his/her next project, and the new work will be shared with the public. A small token prize ($250 shopping voucher) will also be given to the one who picked the correct winner via the public vote. He/She will be selected by random.org.
Testimonials of this year’s mentees can be found here:
Alecia Neo, http://www.villaalicia.info
VILLA ALICIA is a site specific work that pays tribute to the act of remembering and to the home of Dr Nalla Tan (88), a prominent physician, who suffers from advanced Alzheimer’s Disease, a few days before the entire 1950s style house is demolished.
The Tan family has made the painful decision to sell the house and relocate this year. This August, the family will shift out and leave behind 40 years of memories, which are embodied in this space.
Out of this family’s relocation was born the opportunity and desire to explore the themes of memory, space and embodiment.
In Villa Alicia, old family photographs from the Tan family’s treasured photo albums are restaged for the camera. Intimate moments recreated by strangers. The different families, in turn, come together to create new memories of past moments. In many ways, these photographs are mirrors. They captured someone else’s experiences, but echo moments familiar to the viewer’s own.
Through the re-staging old family photographs, Dr Nalla Tan’s personal biography and condition is used as the vehicle for provoking thoughts and emotions about the larger issue at hand: Dr Nalla Tan forgets because of Alzheimer’s Disease, but does Singapore society risk forgetting too in a similar phenomena of forced forgetting through the development of the landscape and destruction of memory-infused materiality?
Installations and soundscapes in different spaces in the house seek to evoke in the participants the range of emotions experienced by an Alzheimer’s sufferer as well as the abstract phenomena of how memory functions.
I see the value in capturing the fragility of memories, people and spaces, through a rare opportunity in having access to the home of a prominent person; the contrast of generations, the new and the old, and the loss faced as memory fails you.
I try to dig out the invisible characters like boys from every kind different women and girls with different social positions and ages. In the same time, I also try to indicate the phenomenon nowadays is no difference between girls and boys.
Take me for example, I can also be “girl” and be “boy” in the same time. And I hope we can see this world with no any sexual discrimination by this case, we are just the same as the beginning we were born.
The idea of ‘identity’ always intrigues me. How one gives an impression; how one stimulates; how one affects oneself and the others.
In ‘Biyls’ (taken from the terms ‘boys’ (male) and ‘girls’ (female)), I attempted to investigate certain attributes of genders in today’s society and present what I’ve rediscovered further that I’ve always believed in.
The mainstream of today’s society believes that the notions of masculinity and femininity are developing into something ambiguous and questionable each day. The suddenly occurring symptom of the so-called ‘grey areas’ in this matter even makes things more complex and hard to accept; not to mention how the belief systems have furthermore partook in intensifying the controversy.
“There are always two sides to a coin.” as they said. I profoundly believe that each gender consists of masculinity and femininity; be it male, female, third gender, fourth gender, fifth gender or just some gender. Those fundamentals simply make us a living being.
What I’m proposing in ‘Biyls’, is not an outcome I picked up, gathered then constructed from various places; it is in fact, something that I believe has always been existing in the first place that is never related with the matters of ‘right’ or ‘wrong’; nor something we could free willingly decide or modify to begin with.
With this portrayal, I’m hoping that the mainstream would eventually unbind its blindfold; care to explore the ‘unseen layers’ within certain genders through a whole set of brand new x-ray goggles. Thenceforth, acknowledging what have been denied and labeled as taboo, for those things aren’t easy to be perceived by the naked eye, nor outside the current social norms.
This series is about recording the time I am disconnected from the world. Each photograph represents one night of sleep. Do I still exist if the camera does not record my presence? Light and time alter my existence on the film. It is absorbed into the environment. My photographs show the effects of time and movement, uncovering the abstract that is under our reality. They show the passage of time during my unconscious state. While the environment is still, my body movements suggest time’s passing. I am the maker and the subject. When the environment is constant and my body and the light are the only movement in the image, the bed becomes a stage. I become a performer. These images are a performance created overnight as time passes around my sleeping body.