Life-size 'art home' brings art to the heartland

Visitors make paper masks as part of the Coming Hom3 art exhibition, held at Kovan Hub. The exhibition consists of a life-size, six-room "art home", complete with a toilet, which screens a video of Singaporeans talking about their stresses, and a kit
Visitors make paper masks as part of the Coming Hom3 art exhibition, held at Kovan Hub. The exhibition consists of a life-size, six-room "art home", complete with a toilet, which screens a video of Singaporeans talking about their stresses, and a kitchen featuring sculptures that depict the chaos that goes on inside.ST PHOTO: MARK CHEONG

Art arrived in the heartland yesterday when 2,500 thronged a six-room "art home" created by 20 local artists with the help of residents.

The project, titled Coming Hom3 and stationed at Kovan Hub, was billed as a house-warming of the life-size home, measuring 30m by 12m with rooms, a kitchen and a toilet.

In the "toilet", artists Cherry Chan and Nah Eng Kiat from the music and art collective, Syndicate, screened a video of Singaporeans talking about their stresses. This was distilled from 12 interview sessions they had with 200 residents.

Mr Nah, 42, said they picked their topic after being assigned the toilet because that is where people escape from stress. "It is what a lot of Singaporeans have to do when they live with their extended family and don't have their personal space," he said.

Other rooms depicted the chaos of a kitchen by stacking kitchen equipment and chairs into a sculpture, while a bedroom had an outline of two people on a white bedsheet, their heads represented by television sets.

The exhibition was organised by the People's Association, which said it was co-created by the artists and 10,000 residents over four months. The exhibition ends today.

Minister for Culture, Community and Youth Grace Fu attended the event. She also took part in a live streaming of a singalong with 500 other residents at another grassroots event in Kaki Bukit Neighbourhood Park.

Visitors to the "house-warming" also took part in a banner art workshop in which they spray-painted huge banners put up outside the exhibition.

Madam Chern Siok Gee, 52, who went with her husband and daughter, said she was glad to see artwork that involved residents.

"Art has to be down to earth and to reflect our lives. I think it is also good for children to come and look at art," she said.

What she was most excited to see were masks drawn by her two daughters that were featured in one of the rooms. "It was really satisfying to see that," she said.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on July 03, 2016, with the headline 'Life-size 'art home' brings art to the heartland'. Print Edition | Subscribe