Arts

Contrary to uninitiated belief, the Arts exceeds the scope of visual art. To the best of our ability, the Arts vertical is entrenched in the egalitarian belief that all forms of art are born equal, and should be represented likewise.

Capturing the Spirit: Ronnie Ford Features Unique Texturescaping Technique in Sublime Landscape Artworks

Back with his third solo exhibition titled ‘Capturing the Spirit’, contemporary Scottish artist Ronnie Ford portrays his artworks on travels and experiences through ‘texturescaping‘. About the Artist Ford believes in the saying: “Anyone can paint a picture, but only a master can capture its spirit.” Born in Dunoon, Scotland, Ford’s passion for art started when he was 16. Acrylic paint back in the day was too sticky and he wanted to combine his love for painting and sculpting. Thus, Ronnie Ford became the pioneer artist to adopt what is now known as ‘texturescaping‘. Growing up, he had many role models…

SGIFF 2018: A Showcase of Emerging & Established Film Talents

Founded in 1987, the Singapore International Film Festival (SGIFF) is the largest and longest-running film event in Singapore. This year, the 29th edition of SGIFF aims to showcase both emerging and established film talents, focusing on the regional while expanding out to the global. From highly anticipated film screenings to programs and masterclasses led by experts in the film industry, there is something in store for all. Festival Opening & Special Presentation Films Cities of Last Things (2018) SGIFF will be opening with Malaysian-born director Ho Wi Ding’s Cities of Last Things, where we are introduced to Zhang, a retired…

Guards at the Taj Review: Beauty Comes at a Price

Guards at the Taj is a personal story of a friendship challenged under dictatorship. Two long-term friends, Humayun and Babur, stand guard at the Taj Mahal hours before it is unveiled at dawn. They are forbidden to look at the monument, speak, or lower their swords. The play reaches a turning point as the guards are ordered to do an unimaginably violent act and their friendship is changed forever. I leave the Singapore Repertory Theatre after Guards at the Taj with mixed feelings. For a start, I am impressed by the actors’ performance, especially since the whole play only runs…

Sentosa’s Island Lights Returns with Dazzling Installations & First-Ever Pikachu Night Parade

Previously known as Pop Up Night, this year’s Sentosa’s Island Lights – taking place from now till 31 December 2018 – presents 10 art installations set at Palawan Beach. To complete your experience, Sentosa will also be hosting the first-ever Pikachu Night Parade held outside Japan! Pikachu Night Parade Date: 14-16 and 21-23 December 2018Parade Timings: 7.30pm (all dates) and 9pm (15 and 22 December 2018) Everyone’s favourite Pokémon will be joining the Island Lights party this year! The Pikachu Night Parade will see nine adorable Pikachus dolled up in LED lights, marching and dancing along a 100m route at Palawan…

The Great Moscow Circus Review: A Night of Heart-Stopping Thrills & Hearty Laughs

The Great Moscow Circus was a night of death-defying stunts, jaw-dropping acts, and a magnificent display of the best of circus. Walking in, the impressive tent was indeed a sight to behold, especially with the attention to detail, such as a stall selling carnival staples of candy floss and popcorn. We were invited to attend the red carpet gala, and saw celebrities donned in a chromatic display of costumes that matched the mirth and excitement of the atmosphere. It was certainly a night of glitz and glamour, as many rocked glittery heels and flamboyant dresses. The night began with The…

In Review: Singapore Writers Festival 2018 Strips Language Barriers & Universal Boundaries

The eventful Singapore Writers Festival (SWF), organised by the National Arts Council to champion and cultivate an appreciation for literary arts and culture was held from 2 to 11 November 2018. There is a concerted effort to expose the general public to global literature beyond those written originally in the English language. This is a welcome change as Singapore’s education system is often very centralized on English literature, limiting the perception of what literature can be and what different languages can offer. While I find the programs to be generally illuminating and enjoyable, I also see the potentialities in further…

5 Questions with Ghafir Akbar and Jay Saighal on SRT’s Latest Production: Guards at the Taj

Guards at the Taj, written by award-winning playwright and winner of the best new play in the 2016 Obie awards, Rajiv Joseph, will be performed in KC Arts Centre from 14 November 2018 to 1 December 2018. Set in 1648, Guards at the Taj is a dark comedy based on a myth about Taj Mahal, a mausoleum commissioned by the Mughal emperor, Shah Jahan, to house the tomb of his favourite wife, Mumtaz Mahal. In the play, the majestic beauty of the Taj Mahal is a deliberate contrast to the ordinary guards who are placed in charge of the mausoleum the day before its unveiling.…

Mammia Mia!: More Than Just A Pop Musical

Last performed in Singapore in 2014, with iconic ABBA hits from the 70s, the musical Mamma Mia! once again proves its broad appeal with its latest production at the Sands Theatre. The audience was going wild in every scene, with non-stop laughter, applause, and even tears. The playful sexual innuendos, heartwarming family scenes, and lively rendering of the catchy oldies are the highlights of the night. One of the scenes that have made the deepest impressions is where leading lady Sophie’s mother, Donna Sheridan, met her three ex-lovers for the first time since decades. It is also the moment when…

Exploring Worlds in Singapore Writers Festival 2018

The Chinese character 界 (jiè), the theme of this year’s Singapore Writers Festival (SWF), is multi-layered in its meanings, referring to both the world and the universe at large, and physical and non-physical boundaries. It also alludes to the endless worlds of imagination, where such boundaries are more porous and even erasable. (L-R) Festival Director Yeow Kai Chai, Guest-of-Honour Senior Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth, and Transport Mr Baey Yam Keng, and Chairman of SWF steering committee, Professor Kwok Kian Woon Its opening ceremony song under the same name already set the stage, with homegrown musician Kelvin…

Between the Lines of Chinese Political Cartoons

What comes to mind when “satirical cartoon” is mentioned? The common tendency is to associate them with The New Yorker or other famous western comics of similar genres. The latest special exhibition, Between the Lines – The Chinese Cartoon Revolution, aims to highlight this lesser-known history by taking us on a time travel back to the golden age of Chinese political cartoons that emerged at the end of the Qing Dynasty. The exhibition space of Between the Lines – The Chinese Cartoon Revolution. You may be as surprised as I am to find out that witty commentary-styled cartoons in Singapore…
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