Research

Research

The Research programme aims to connect academic research with other forms of knowledge and production. The NTU Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore hosts visiting scholars of various disciplines whose research focuses on discourses addressing Singapore and the region.

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As a research centre, the NTU CCA Singapore is dedicated to knowledge production, critical discourse and the exchange of ideas. The Centre’s programming is supported by a rigorous education and public programme consisting of Exhibition (de)Tours, film screenings, talks, workshops, symposiums, performances and open studios. By collaborating with artists and cultural practitioners from diverse fields of knowledge, the public programme aims to provide points of entry to engage with the key themes of the exhibition and artist practice. View Calendar

NTU CCA Singapore has been awarded the following grants in 2021:

Ministry of Education (MOE) Academic Research Fund Tier 1

Environmentally-Engaged Artistic Practices in South, Southeast Asia and the Pacific and their Potential Impact as Contribution for Transdisciplinary Research in Singapore  

Term of Funding: 1 November 2021 — 31 October 2023

Principal Investigator: Ute Meta Bauer, Founding Director, NTU Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore and Professor, School of Art, Design and Media, Nanyang Technological University

In recent years, climate change has triggered alarming environmental scenarios in the region. Artists and climate activists have reacted to these circumstances by proposing methods to create awareness and navigate the environmental collapse.

The core goal of this research project is to identify artistic inquiries focused on addressing environmental challenges in South, Southeast Asia and the Pacific. By establishing a methodology to evaluate the significance and impacts of each inquiry, it will investigate the capacity of these art projects to deepen the understanding of the effect of accelerated climate change in the aforementioned regions. The research project will also explore how such inquiries can be of value when engaging environmental issues specific to Singapore. 

Ultimately, the project aims to foster a dialogue between artistic forms of knowledge production and the scholarly knowledge generated by scientific practitioners engaged in climate change matters.

Ministry of Education (MOE) Academic Research Fund Tier 2

Climate Crisis and Cultural Loss

Term of Funding: 1 March 2021 – 29 February 2024

Principal Investigator: Ute Meta Bauer, Founding Director, NTU Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore and Professor, School of Art, Design and Media, Nanyang Technological University

Co-Investigator: Kristy Kang, Assistant Professor, School of Art, Design and Media, Nanyang Technological University

Collaborators: Nabil Ahmed (INTERPRT), Guigone Camus (Laboratoire des Sciences de l’Environnement et du Climat), Hervé Lallement-Moe (University of French Polynesia), Armin Linke (ISIA Urbino)

This project examines how climate crisis and cultural loss interconnect. The core objective is the co-production of knowledge that can lead to a changed understanding of environmental justice, which, in turn, will suggest changes in existing legal and policy frameworks. The project hypothesises that a fundamental connection between people and their environments has been lost in contemporary urban contexts, resulting in feelings of indifference towards the climate crisis or unexplained feelings of climate anxiety.

It deploys a research team with transdisciplinary methods to build on emerging environmental jurisprudence in the Pacific region and produce narrative visualisations demonstrating the links between cultural loss and climate change.

By combining scholarly knowledge with cultural and artistic practices, the project will develop an innovative framework for addressing the impact of accelerated climate change. Using tools from visual studies and forensic architecture, from ethnography and law, to make scientific evidence on climate change socially robust and impactful, it will also create a relay between local perspectives and knowledge generated in different academic fields. Data visualisation and audiovisual presentations of ecological and cultural loss will be instrumental to transform ecological grief and loss into catalysts for climate action. Such narrative visualisations make visible the necessity to re-establish a direct relation between human societies and the environment, especially in the rapidly-changing urban fabric of a metropolis like Singapore.

National Arts Council (NAC) Research Grant

Understanding Southeast Asia as a “Geocultural Formation: Three Case Studies of Artistic Initiatives from the Region

Term of funding: 19 March 2021 – 31 December 2022

Principal Investigator: Ute Meta Bauer, Founding Director, NTU Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore and Professor, School of Art, Design and Media, Nanyang Technological University

Co-Investigator: David Teh, Associate Professor, Department of English Language and Literature, National University of Singapore

This research is an inquiry into curatorial, artistic, and academic networks of exchange that foster a pluriversal understanding of Southeast Asia. It will highlight the potential of open-ended curatorial, artistic and textual endeavours that formulate their own modus operandi. Analysing motivations, methods, and audiences of three distinct art initiatives by local practitioners will provide valuable insights for the writing of future cultural policies and alternative metrics to evaluate the impact of nonconforming approaches within regional studies. This will reshape and expand policies and programmes that seek to internationalise or regionalise Singapore art scenes. Acknowledging the long-term impact of such critical thinking and the creation of alternative knowledges and transnational networks would advance traditional perspectives in Southeast Asian scholarship and its funding mechanisms.

The project aims to answer questions such as:

* How do these transnational initiatives contribute to a new understanding and production of knowledge of Southeast Asia?

* Can a lexicon, consisting of vernacular vocabulary such as ghosts and tigers (Ho Tzu Nyen), be used to determine a region?

* How can we generate knowledge from local and traditional artistic expressions around the Mekong River (The Flying Circus Project) that is creating a counter-map to national delineations?

* How can we foster a discursive space through a cultural domain (Southeast of Now) beyond the geographical?

Publications

A recipient and producer of knowledge, NTU CCA Singapore’s publishing activities contribute to its holistic approach, expanding the connections across the Centre’s exhibitions, residencies, public programming, and academic education.

Research Frameworks

Place.Labour.Capital. (1 January 2013 — 31 December 2017)

PLACE.LABOUR.CAPITAL. is NTU CCA Singapore’s overarching framework for the year that will intertwine our platforms: exhibitions, residencies, research & education. This open-ended research and curatorial project will address the complexities of a world in flux and the dynamic relations between local and global. The notion of place as a locale often fades into the background, how does labour, routes of migration, and flows of global capital impact upon smaller scale? Singapore – the world’s second-largest trading port and an economic epicentre of Southeast Asia serves as point of departure to examine place, labour, and capital.

Climates. Habitats. Environments. (9 December 2017 — current)

This topical research cluster connects the Centre’s research & academic programmes, exhibitions, and residencies for the upcoming years. Changes in the environment influence weather patterns and these climatic shifts impact habitats, and vice versa. Precarious conditions of habitats are forcing migration of humans and other species at a critical level. The consequences of human intervention are felt on a global scale, affecting geo-political, social, and cultural systems. The Centre intends to discuss and understand these realities through art and culture in dialogue with other fields of knowledge.

CLIMATES. HABITATS. ENVIRONMENTS. follows the overarching topic of PLACE. LABOUR. CAPITAL. (2013–17), continuing to address the complexities and the dynamics that entangle the local with the global.

Public Resource Centre
Library. Artist Resource Platform. Video Resource Platform.
The NTU CCA Singapore Artist Resource Platform aims to provide local and visiting curators, scholars and writers, as well as an interested public, a point of entry to contemporary artistic practice.
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Research Fellows

NTU CCA Singapore hosts visiting scholars of various disciplines whose research areas address Singapore in relation to its position within a wider geography.

Academic Programmes

MA & PhD Programmes

The NTU School of Art, Design and Media (ADM) has a Master of Arts (Research) and Doctor of Philosophy programme. It is a research-oriented programme that provides students with the opportunity to pursue independent research also in research areas related to the work of NTU CCA Singapore, such as Art in Public Space and Curating the City, pending availability of supervisors. ADM offers a choice between two options of study within the MA (Research) and PhD programmes: by research or by research with a practical component.

Launched in 2018, the Museum Studies and Curatorial Practices (Master of Arts, one year, coursework) prepares graduates for professional positions in the highly complex and diverse museum landscape, and in the ever-expanding spaces of the curatorial.

With a focus on Southeast Asia, this course-based study programme places emphasis on the theoretical and practical challenges of curating contemporary and historic art and culture, and foster a deeper understanding of the dynamic field of museum studies. In both areas, experienced practitioners provide insight into the required skills of these fast-growing sectors.

Unique in its combination of classical museum and heritage studies, together with new curatorial theories and practices, the programme allows the candidates to choose between three streams: museum studies, curatorial practice, or a combination of both. In this way, the programme offers students the chance to get familiar with a wide range of skills, which will resonate with the multifaceted fields of work.

Call for Applications

Museum Studies and Curatorial Practices (Master of Arts, one year, coursework)
Application period: 1 September 2020 to 15 March 2021
Intake: August 2021
For MSCP, please contact: admcsep@ntu.edu.sg

For more information, please visit www.adm.ntu.edu.sg/programmes and https://blogs.ntu.edu.sg/mscp/

Master of Arts [Research], two years, and Doctor of Philosophy 
Application deadline: 31 January
Intake: August
For MA & PhD programmes, please contact: adm_graduateprog@ntu.edu.sg