PPC: A Public Living Room

The mini festival at Lepark is the work of (standing from left) Zul Awab, Geraldine Kang, Carmen Low, May Leong, (seated (from left) Philipp Aldrup, Shaiful Risan and Soph O.
The mini festival at Lepark is the work of (standing from left) Zul Awab, Geraldine Kang, Carmen Low, May Leong, (seated (from left) Philipp Aldrup, Shaiful Risan and Soph O. ST PHOTO: LIM SIN THAI

The open-air carpark of People's Park Complex in Chinatown has become an indie art spot. It has hosted several arts and lifestyle events, including packed film screenings, served as a concert venue and been turned into a night market.

This alternative social space, Lepark, which draws people in droves with its funky programming, promises more surprises during Singapore Art Week with PPC: A Public Living Room.

This is a mini-arts festival organised by Hyphen. There is a mix of performances, talks and exhibitions, promising a relaxed outing for art lovers.

From today till Jan 30, People's Park Complex's line-up includes works by more than 20 visual and performance artists and collectives whose practices span diverse mediums, ranging from sculpture to drawing and photography to 3D installations. Artists include Singapore's Alecia Neo and Geraldine Kang and Indonesia's Andreas Siagian and Budi Prakosa who run Lifepatch (Yogyakarta), an independent community-based organisation involving art, science and technology.

Ms May Leong, 33, co-founder of organiser Hyphen, a non-profit company which is behind multi- disciplinary arts projects, says she is "drawn to the complex from an architectural point of view".

  • VIEW IT/ PPC: A PUBLIC LIVING ROOM

  • WHERE: People’s Park Complex, 6th floor carpark, 1 Park Road

    WHEN: Today to Jan 30, 6 to 9pm (Tuesday to Thursday), 3 to 9pm (Sunday). Hours vary on Friday and Saturday. Closed on Monday

    ADMISSION: Free

    INFO: www.facebook.com/hyphenarts

The complex is the first mixed-used building of its kind in Asia comprising offices and residences above a retail space, and was a symbol of Asian modernist architecture.

Says Ms Leong: "The building carries a special significance in Singapore's contemporary art history. Tang Da Wu's seminal 1991 work Tiger's Whip was first performed in the courtyard here."

Given this history and the setting, organisers invited artists to respond to the idea of a "public living room", where distinctions between the public and private are blurred. The setting also invites reflection on and about the alternative uses of public spaces.

Photographer and artist Neo's Public Conversations series which seeks out foreign workers who make public spaces their homes is fittingly on display here.

Says Neo, 29: "The use of public spaces changes our perceptions of and experiences with art. It also challenges artists to think deeper about the purpose of our work, about art in the every day."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 15, 2016, with the headline 'PPC: A Public Living Room'. Print Edition | Subscribe