The Gallery Children’s Biennale – organised by National Gallery Singapore – is back for its second edition from Saturday, 25 May, to Sunday, 29 December 2019. Held in alternate years to each other, the Gallery Children’s Biennale complements the Children’s Festival, which was first launched by National Gallery Singapore in 2018.
This year’s exhibition is themed ‘Embracing Wonder’ and will feature 11 interactive and multi-dimensional artworks committed to inspiring young, curious minds through art. Inspired by a child’s unfettered imagination and ability to embrace all things new, the works activate the senses of children while reigniting their sense of curiosity, excitement and wonder. Kids who visit the gallery will also receive a small pack, containing activities that they can partake in which will enhance their Biennale experience.
Here are some of the works children can look forward to at this year’s Gallery Children’s Biennale.
Made by husband-and-wife duo Milenko and Delia Prvački, BIG HUG explores the seemingly abstract concepts of the universe, humanity and self – through the eyes of a child. The multi-room experiential installation is open to all to explore and observe objects designed for self-discovery nestled within. BIG HUG consists of five rooms – Discover the World, Friendship Room, Family Room, Self Room and BIG HUG’s Little Museum.
The Oort Cloud and the Blue Mountain
The Oort Cloud and the Blue Mountain is inspired by the seen and the unseen. The “Oort Cloud” is a thick layer of icy objects encircling our solar system, while the “Blue Mountain” refers to a painting by Wassily Kandinsky depicting various landscapes.
A motion-activated installation with lights, sounds, objects and sensors, the exhibition invites visitors to take time and understand the value of patience, gentleness and tactility. The first major collaborative work of husband and wife Hazel and Andreas as artists, their 7-year-old daughter Hannah was also brought into the effort, along with an engineer and designer.
Kenangan Kunang-Kunang (Memories of Fireflies)
Kenangan Kunang-Kunang (Memories of Fireflies) consists of six life-sized, interactive lanterns that encourage individual and group play. The lanterns were inspired from the Damar Kurung, a traditional paper lantern from Eastern Java, Indonesia, which depict scenes from everyday Javanese life. Using his own style of patterns, colours, and characters, artist Eko Nugroho imagines a world where everyone shows love and care to one another. Akin to fireflies in the forest at night, these lanterns are arranged in a labyrinth-like path, representing hope, guidance and creativity for children to explore and rediscover.
Chance Operations – created by Song-Ming Ang – is made up of thousands of steel pipes in various colours and sizes to form different shapes. The installation comes with 350 ping pong balls that children can use to self-compose tunes by throwing them against the make-shift music instrument.
Inspired by Malay proverbs, Singaporean sculptor Zainudin Samsuri beckons young explorers on board the Dayung Sampan – a Malay phrase which translates into ‘row your boat’. At the Dayung Sampan, children will discover a collection of giant objects that seem to resemble a foot or a cage – young explorers are encouraged to use their imaginations and follow their dreams!
Gallery Children’s Biennale 2019: Embracing Wonder
Date: Saturday, 25 May 2019 – Sunday, 29 December 2019
Venue: National Gallery Singapore, 1 Saint Andrew’s Road, Singapore 178957
Admission is free for Singaporeans and Permanent Residents (PRs), and ticket prices start at $20 for others. For more information, visit www.childrensbiennale.com
Photos by Goh Jing Wen of the DANAMIC team.