All the way in the East, Pasir Ris has long offered respite from the hustle and bustle of city life since its days as a kampung and recreational fishing town. As the focus of National Arts Council’s newest edition of Arts in Your Neighbourhood (AYN), join in the fun both in-person and online with 10 arts programmes celebrating the district.
Spanning visual arts installations, music performances and multi-disciplinary experiences, these programmes were co-created with a diverse group of artists, arts organisations and community partners. Inspired by the stories, the people and the environs of Pasir Ris, this season’s programmes will allow visitors to experience every day spaces transformed into art canvases in a visual arts walking trail around the neighbourhood, take part in a digital choose-your-own-adventure story game and see Pasir Ris through a pinhole camera from inside a roving truck. People from all around the island are encouraged to enjoy and experience the town through the arts while connecting with the community through shared stories.
Highlights of this edition include the premiere of The Finger Players’ film The Puppeteer Prepares. Here, viewers will get a chance to see how artists and makers have been coping over the past year with the pandemic, as it strings together stories of strength and resilience from the community, and staying together, all brought to life through the age-old art of puppetry. Complementing the film is an exhibition at Pasir Ris Public Library where visitors can find out more about puppetry as an artform and follow the creation journey of a puppet from sketches on paper to how it comes to life in the puppeteer’s hands.
3Pumpkins’ Kotak Photo (Photo Box) invites you into the magical world of pinhole photography, as you hop into the back of a 14-foot truck converted into a pinhole camera box and immerse yourself in the kaleidoscopic sights and sounds of the neighbourhood, before heading to the pop-up interactive installations at Pasir Ris Park to create your own pinhole images.
Shophouse & Co’s PODSCAPE — Sounds and Stories of The City is back, as the yellow mobile recording booth sits in Pasir Ris Park, all for you to record your stories, memories and anecdotes of the neighbourhood. Expect an exciting mix of immersive storytelling soundscapes made from objects found in Pasir Ris, collaborative foley creations, and a “new normal” musical experience in a public park.
In The Story of a Place Is in its Name, five Singaporean artists tell the story of Pasir Ris with individual works that transform everyday spaces of the neighbourhood – from the void decks and lift lobby at Pasir Ris Street 11 to the Coffee Shop at Pasir Ris Drive 6. Curated by artists Stacy Huang & Susanna Tan, the series of installations draws inspiration from the sights and memories of Pasir Ris and its name that echoes a literal white sandy beach. Find out more on their Instagram
And while enjoying a little retail therapy at White Sands Shopping Mall, enjoy SYNDICATE’s Api Api’s Dreams, a light projection display on the building façade, set to original soundscape compositions. Experience the sights and sounds of Pasir Ris in this piece as sound recordings taken on an evening walk along Sungei Api Api are woven into original compositions by music artists to accompany the projection.
Besides offering new ways to experience Pasir Ris through visual arts, stories, and installations, AYN also presents a symphony of audio works for a complete, multi-sensory arts experience. In a specially curated 40-minute digital programme Dendang Warisan (Songs of Heritage), audiences can listen to a new song about Pasir Ris inspired by students of the neighbourhood. Audiences can also revisit Pasir Ris’ kampung life through a blend of traditional Indian music and jazz by award-winning Indo-ASEAN jazz ensemble Brahmastra, and indulge in an orchestral performance by the Asian Cultural Symphony Orchestra inspired by the sounds of birds, beaches, and natural world of Pasir Ris.
Arts In Your Neighbourhood: Pasir Ris runs from 11th to 28th March 2021. For a full list of programmes and more information, visit their website here