Luke Willis Thompson’s (b. 1988, New Zealand) objects are typically both curios drawn from historical blind-spots and markers of, or stand-ins for, very particular personal lived experience. Thompson’s recent projects have focused on politics around the circulation and repatriation of artefacts, and the
class-bound art world’s mode of distribution.
Thompson holds an MFA (2010) and a BFA (2009) from the ELAM School of Fine Arts, University of Auckland. Selected exhibitions include: Surround Audience, the New Museum Triennial (2015); Foreign Exchange (or the stories you wouldn’t tell a stranger), Weltkulturen Museum, Frankfurt, Germany (2014); The 5th Auckland Triennial, Auckland Art Gallery, New Zealand (2013). Thompson won the acclaimed Auckland Art Gallery’s Walters Prize in 2014.
During her residency, Weixin Chong will explore perspectives and portrayals of Tropicality in a Singaporean context, from projections of exoticism and escape to the post- colonial self-conscious gaze of the tropical being and how the natural growth of tropical wildlife represents ‘undevelopment’.
Pursuing his sustained interest in natural bodies and biological mechanisms, Trevor Yeung intends to explore Singapore’s culture and politics of nature preservation and gardening. More specifically, he will investigate the history of Singapore Botanic Gardens, their role as a laboratory for exploiting natural resources, and the effect of the introduction of foreign plants on local ecosystems. Furthermore, having spent some time working in Singapore in 2011, the artist aims to track down and reconnect with his former colleagues and supervisors, whom he has since lost touch with, in order to gather stories of personal growth and professional development and reflect on the fleeting boundaries that define interpersonal relationships. Ultimately, the artist aims to produce a new series of works that muse on his own relationship with people, plants, and society in Singapore.
Thao-Nguyen Phan will expand her research on the introduction of the Latin alphabet as a writing system in Vietnam, exploring how the same transition occurred in other Southeast Asian countries such as Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines. In Vietnam, the Romanised script was first introduced in the 17th century by catholic missionaries to spread Christianity, playing a significant role in the process of colonization of the country. While official accounts celebrate the adoption of the Latin alphabet as a symbol of modernity, the implications of this historical process are far more complex and tell stories of cultural loss and gain, national amnesia, and violence.
The practice of Lêna Bùi (b. 1985, Vietnam) is deeply drawn to the intangible aspects of life, such as faith, death, and dreams and the ways in which they influence our behaviours and perceptions. Through the incorporation of anecdotes and personal stories, her works articulate intimate reflections upon the impact of rapid development and the relationship between humans and nature. Bùi’s works have been included in group exhibitions and presentations at Sharjah Art Foundation, United Arab Emirates (2018); Mansfield Freeman Center for East Asian Studies, Wesleyan University, Middle Town, United States (2018); Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin, Germany (2017); The Factory Contemporary Arts Centre, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam (2016); and Carré d’Art, Nîmes, France (2014) amongst other venues.
In the last decade, the artistic practice of Susie Wong unfurled as a prolonged reflection on the nature of memory and the symbolic layers embedded in different modes of representation. During her six-month residency, she is intent on examining the iconic status of certain typologies of images in order to understand how their meaning is affected by the circulation on the web and other modes of consumption. The artist engages with the tropes of romance through the lens of pop culture, from the cult film The World of Suzie Wong (1960) to contemporary East Asian dramas. The fabrication of feelings and the normalization of romance in the mass media is the subject of a series of works which, through subtle gestures of over-layering, inscription, and re-imagining, reflect on the universal currency of romantic clichés, the subtle traps of translation, and the entanglement of desire and exoticism in the representation of the “East.”
Personal narration and/or musical interpretation define both the method and the subject of Manon de Boer’s practice. Working primarily with the moving image, over twenty years she has composed a series of “portrait films” that explore the intimate relationship between language, memory, sound, and time while continuously interrogating truth claims, biographical narratives, and the medium of film itself.
Manon de Boer (b. 1966) is a Dutch artist based in Brussels. She completed her artistic education at the Akademie Van Beeldende Kunsten, Rotterdam, and at the Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten, Amsterdam, Netherlands. Her work has received wide international recognition. Her most recent solo shows include presentations at Secession, Vienna, Austria (2016), Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, Netherlands (2013), Philadelphia Museum of Art, United States (2012); Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis, United States (2011).
The rich visual language of Dana Awartani’s (b. 1987, Saudi Arabia) paintings, sculptures, and textile installations incorporate traditional Islamic art forms into contemporary aesthetics. Engaging with the relationship between geometry and nature, she harnesses the timeless and enduring relevance of forms in order to deconstruct contemporary issues such as gender, faith, loss, and cultural destruction. Past solo exhibitions include The Silence Between Us, Maraya Art Centre, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates (2018) and Detroit Affinities: Dana Awartani, Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit, United States (2017). She has participated in numerous group shows and biennales such as Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2016, Kochi, India and the 1st Yinchuan Biennale, Museum of Contemporary Art, Yinchuan, China (both 2016), among others.
The artist was scheduled to be in-residence from July – Sept 2020. Due to the COVID-19 virus outbreak and international travel restrictions, the artist was unable to participate in the residency programme physically.
Illustrating a new way of seeing, Buen Calubayan’s Instructions on Viewing the Landscape is an long-term exercise in seeing the bigger picture, literally and figuratively, which subtly challenges notions of national identity and colonialism. Articulated through a complex set of rules, this conceptual work is an investigative device aimed to unpack the history of late 19th century Filipino art – a period of significant political changes propelled by the revolutions against the Spanish rule. In re-examining and reviewing the landscapes of celebrated painters Juan Luna (1857 – 1899) and Félix Resurrección Hidalgo (1855 – 1913), the artist locates their vanishing points and brings to the fore unexpected tensions between the viewer and the artwork. Over the course of his residency, Calubayan will extend the scope of the project in order to pinpoint the metaphorical vanishing points in Singapore’s landscape, locating their historical, economic, and religious coordinates.
Laure Prouvost is a French artist living and working in Antwerp, Belgium. She won the 2013 Turner Prize. In 2019, she represented France at the Venice Biennale with the multi-media work The Deep Blue Sea Surrounding You.