In a world gripped by fear and fragmented by uncertainty more than ever, we need art. Art can act as quiet counsel or put the pieces of your life back together. It can guide you in a storm or be the solution you were seeking. And at Art Stage Singapore, you may find your eureka or nirvana.
Now into its eighth year, the annual exhibition is the flagship show of the Southeast Asian art world. It has launched the careers of many budding artists simply by creating buzz and driving conversations. For this year’s edition, which will be held from 26 to 28 January at the Marina Bay Sands Expo and Convention Centre, the theme is Interactions, with a special country focus on Thailand.
The Reason for Thailand
Lorenzo Rudolf, president of the Art Stage organisation, explains that it made sense to start promoting the Thai art scene.
“In the last one and a half years, a lot of new, serious and professional art galleries have opened in Thailand, such as the MAIIAM Museum of Contemporary Art by Jean Michel Beurdeley and his son, Eric Bunnag Booth. There are also many big Thai art collectors such as Petch Osathanugrah and Disaphol Chansiri, who will be opening their own museums in Bangkok and Chiang Mai.”
First-time visitors to Art Stage Singapore should also check out the Southeast Asia Forum, an annual thematic programme that comprises an exhibition and a series of lectures focusing on global issues that directly impact not only Singapore but the region. This year, the main topic of discussion is the continued blend of art and design. Heavy stuff, we admit, but the insights are well worth it.
Otherwise, just browsing the art on offer is a treat in itself. Western and Chinese art tend to dominate global conversations, so it’s heartening to see regional artists get a place on the table. And with art being a representation of the social, cultural and political turmoil of the region the artist is from, it’s interesting to be able to discover usually out-of-bounds issues being dissected in art form.
Art Stage Singapore is from 26-28 January 2018 at Marina Bay Sands Expo & Convention Centre. Get your tickets here.