Playing With & For The Community
Friday, October 28 at 6:30pm, SCYA (Singapore contemporary young artists) opened their doors and showcased members' work. The works are varied in terms of in the way they see, feel a allnd approach. They share a common desire to translate the most personal truths into a tangible outcome. A young artist myself, I will attempt to express the art that I see and feel.
Rachel Chan’s faith in the inner being and disbelief in things of the surface is executed with intellect in her photography installation by superimposing images as symbolic that the picture you see is an illusion. That monstrous thing you see can revolt, but the semblance of a human face intact make us reflect. We question one's first impression on future judgments.
Melinda Lauw’s work is a daunting task. She forgoes the most fundamental characteristic of photography: the camera’s ability to convert a scene into a literal description. Her statement is misleading but shows that what she developed is instinctual, daring and worthy of praise. What she does allows mass and forms to take the role of details to inform, while pushing the need for details to the bare minimal.
Clifford Loh’s Lera is lovely with her asymmetrical hair and face is in line with tradition of figurative arts. The play of barb wires by forming order within the disorder of wires shows photographic craft.
Billy Soh’s willingness to be subject to uncertainty is daring. No, that is a lie. There is very little of that photograph is uncertain. The streaks of light are in no way incidental but conceived to work in visual matters to keep the eye from straying into the vanishing point to quickly. A tradition in landscape picture since the beginning.
Sha Najak is an activist and this inherent desire for equity is in her pictures. The pictures have an honesty to them which is rare. Among the selection of characters shows depth unlike amateur photographers who may be at the same place might have made pictures with much more stench of cliché and exploitation.
Kelvin Atmadibrata's work should simply be experienced in person, as for any temporal art such as performance art . Relics existing as sound pictures text are never enough, as craft then depends not only on the artist but the documenter too. However Kelvin treats map and pictures like screenshots of a game with paths marked out. The narrative is sufficiently evocative though, and one is led to wonder about the performance that must have been.
Jacquelyn Soo’s work is also performance-based. Her relics vary from Kelvin's and are captured as frames on negatives which in ways shows the process, feeling and reactions of the audience. But the frames excelled at showing the drapery of the ritual like performance. From the text provided by the artist it would not be surprising to imagine 2 situations: that is crowds surrounds the artist, as she kneel and prayed; or New Yorkers too busy with work that they could only make a turning glance. We have to be there to know for sure. The engagement of audience and artist would be an interesting sight indeed.
The performance might be strange to some but to me it is sweet. It is of searching and making human connections. The act of having ones heart listened where the sudden anxiety of being close to a stranger raises the heart rate and realizing nothing bad is going to happen and so the heart slows down is physiologically exciting as well as emotionally uplifting. It is not just for the one listened to but also the one listening. It might be akin to finding one’s kindred spirit. I wish I was there.
Rachel Elffin‘s work is of delight with grace and poise it is the way an ideal lady would appear. For this works shows promise, a beautiful beginning and in future exploration judicious use of color and printing would bring a good harvest.
Debra Raymond’s work is delicate, simple, deliberate delightful little observations. It would be interesting to see more, possibly in a display of 3 by 3, for these little observations are music cords and together form a delightful little tune.
Dan Wong’s work is sensual and makes me (a man with little experience) wonder about the female form.
Francis Poon’s work possesses an organic feel which works in describing love and genesis. The use of red blue and yellow and letting the colors mix for shades of green has a degree of deliberateness and so an order.
Wong Pei Lin’s work is soft with colors that are non-representational as is her landscape. There are elements of fantasy which I believe is instinctively done and is fundamentally her desire for larger greater experiences.
Wong Tze Chau’s work rocks as the God of Physics hold in his hands what we hold dear his statement says clearly what he is attempting. I wish to point out often Idolizing involves without full knowledge and this makes me consider the fact how many of us know physics yet we use them nonetheless and often the people who know best aren’t the ones using them. That is the tragedy of the use of nuclear bombs in WWII at Einstein’s protest.
Melanie Chua's work uses the fibonacci sequence as the syllable structure. It is an ode to organic order but the uneven font size in the manual typeset, and ink errors -whether deliberate or accidental- reminds us of the wildness that exist in things.
The artists work have something unique and authentic to them, being young artists, craft may not be at its best but daringness to try while remaining authentic to oneself is again deserving of praise.
- Written by Benedict Chen (member of SCYA & also displaying his artwork; Callistemon Oitrinus (Photography)