Forum: Gillman Barracks, arts organisations must soldier on

Chan + Hori Contemporary's decision to close its Gillman Barracks space from June 30 (Chan + Hori evolves to survive, May 5) is another major blow to the already beleaguered Gillman Barracks, which has suffered multiple exoduses since 2015 (Setback for art cluster?, April 11, 2015).

With the exit of Chan + Hori, Gillman is now operating with a skeletal 11 galleries, a far cry from its initial vision of becoming an "international destination for contemporary art".

The Ryan Foundation has had a close relationship with Gillman, having through my work organised an exhibition of Andy Warhol's photography there in 2016, and, in 2017, the first collectors' exhibition featuring works from the collections of Singapore art collectors. Both of our exhibitions attracted thousands of visitors and were held in the empty galleries of tenants who had vacated.

There is an immense interest in art in Singapore and Gillman Barracks is an ideal location. I applaud the authorities for their agencies' foresight and largesse in dedicating such an expansive space for the exhibition of contemporary art.

I would encourage the National Arts Council, the Nanyang Technological University Centre for Contemporary Art and the remaining galleries at Gillman to soldier on, as this recent departure is merely a bump in the road.

Ryan Su Hing Leng