Singapore Arts Museum

by Poi Wong

This year, Dreamcatchers is honoured to be given the opportunity by the National Youth Council (NYC) to present a youth-oriented event with the theme of “Aspiration” during their SHINE Youth Festival in July.

Before the setting out on the project, let us go behind the scene of Project Dreamcatchers; the visit to the Singapore Art Museum, accompanied by Loo Hwee Hwee an art therapist of NUH as well as Assistant Professor Michael of NTU School of Art, Design and Media. They guided us through a exhibition presenting the work of Lee Wen; a Singapore performance artist.
Lee Wen, best known for his Yellow Man series of work, he’s also one of the pioneers of performance art in Singapore. Let’s proceed into the mind of an artist; Lee Wen: Lucid Dreams in the Reverie of the Real.

Lee Wen’s artwork varies from painting, video, photography and objects. Personally it’s an ideal place to find inspiration for our work. These varieties of work allow the Dreamcatchers to explore different media and not stick solely on drawing and colouring.

Before the tour starts, we all did some self-introduction and our own perspective of arts so Michael gets to know each one of us better. I shared some of my views in terms of arts and how big of an admiration I have for Leonardo Da Vinci, while others have their own opinion on arts and are willing to have a tryout on video and photography.

In the exhibition, the settings and visual experience were so much different from what I knew from the word “art” I thought the wall would be decorated with paintings and ground occupied with artefacts; I was wrong. The museum is full of surprises; visitors get to see the range of different media of arts from room to room. Some of the rooms are intimidating when people need to venture through a yellow passage just to see what is in the other side.

There was one room that struck my attention; it was empty with no pictures or artefacts, just words printed onto the four walls and a short brown bench located in the middle of the room. Thrilled and intimidated, with the curtain drawn behind me, I was surrounded by four walls printed with words in Mandarin and English base on politics, scientific development concept and law. From my own point of view I felt that those words represent the everyday stuff affecting our life. The changes in politic across time, the speed of scientific development have been unreal and not to forget the revisiting of many laws around the world.

Just from the empty room, I gained much knowledge and some hidden meaning behind the word “art”. Project Dreamcatchers’s agenda is to promote awareness to the general public, by using the different media of art we can reach out to other people in a more interesting way. Also at the same time, Dreamcatchers can have some fun while sending a strong message to the public.

The tour of the museum is very much over; we all left the place with much knowledge and inspiration from the artist; Lee Wen. The Dreamcatchers were then ready to show off their artistic skills.