Cinerama: Art and the Moving Image in Southeast Asia

Delve into notions of memory, identity and politics through moving image works by ten artists and collectives from across Southeast Asia. Spanning hand-drawn animation to immersive video installations, the works explore the history of the genre, its current-day expressions, and potential for the future.

Maze Out (installation view) (2017) by oomleoSingapore Art Museum

oomleo | Maze Out (2017)

In a pixel art world peopled with characters inspired by the artist’s friends as well as certain observable stereotypes in Indonesian society, 'Maze Out' depicts the inter-connectivity of society and the cogs of the economy. At times, the darker side of these networks and the economy is suggested when we witness the human ‘rage against the machine’, or when a fast-moving conveyor belt swallows up a worker. 

The Man Who (2017) by Victor BalanonSingapore Art Museum

Victor Balanon | The Man Who (2017)

This single-channel video explores the inter-relationships and cross-referenciality of film and cinema, alongside art movements like Expressionism, Surrealism, Futurism and Cubism. An experimental narrative short feature, the project is also a tribute to the nameless studio workers who operate behind the camera.

Zsa Zsa Zsu (2007) by TromaramaSingapore Art Museum

Tromarama | Zsa Zsa Zsu (2007)

'Zsa Zsa Zsu' is a music video produced for the Bandung-based music band, Rock N’ Roll Mafia (RNRM). The title of the song is a phrase used to describe the electric connection and chemistry experienced when meeting a new love interest, and narrates the anticipation and longing of infatuation, from both the male and female perspective.

A White, White Day (2017) by Jeremy SharmaSingapore Art Museum

Jeremy Sharma | A White, White Day (2017)

Jeremy Sharma interrogates the notions of representation and form by deconstructing the filmic image, breaking it down into its component phenomena of light, shadow and sound. An installation of lightboxes appropriates the appearance and function of a cinema screen, transforming the space of the gallery into an atmospheric rendition of the movie theatre.

AK-47 vs. M16 (2015) by The Propeller GroupSingapore Art Museum

The Propeller Group | AK-47 vs. M16 (2015)

On first viewing, 'AK-47 vs. M16' offers an interpretation of war as signified by two bullets – and representative of two conflicting ideologies – colliding into and against each other. As the bullets enter the block, the ballistics gel – meant to simulate the consistency of human flesh – flails and recoils on its perch. Devoid of flesh-tones, the translucent ballistics gel, captured violently reverberating in the video, feels theatrical, almost like a tango moving through water. Yet in tandem, the ballistics block of 'AK-47 vs. M16' – housed in its pristine vitrine – presents an image of violence frozen, and entrapped as a clinical and futuristic exhibit.

AK-47 vs. M16, The Film (2016) by The Propeller GroupSingapore Art Museum

The Propeller Group | AK-47 vs. M16, The Film (2016)

Slicing and splicing together scenes from Hollywood films, documentaries, news reports, and found footage from the Internet, this feature-length film is edited to intensify the ‘movie star status’ of the Soviet-made AK-47 and the American M16, to explore the influence these ubiquitous instruments of warfare have had on popular culture, and indeed the imaging of conflicting ideologies during the Cold War. Composed this way, 'AK-47 vs. M16, The Film' raises questions about the aesthetics of violence and the violence of aesthetics.

Wear You All Night (2017) by Sarah Choo JingSingapore Art Museum

Sarah Choo Jing | Wear You All Night (2017)

This work evokes various forms of contemporary visual culture. Like a commercial for luxury merchandise, it is replete with signifiers of conspicuous consumption. 

Making Chinatown (2012) by Ming WongSingapore Art Museum

Ming Wong | Making Chinatown (2012)

This work is Ming Wong’s response to the cinematic quality of the city’s neighbourhoods, and a reinterpretation of Roman Polanski’s classic 1974 film, ‘Chinatown’. Wong plays all the iconic characters from the original film, and re-enacts key scenes from ‘Chinatown’ against backdrops printed with stills from the film.

Falim House: Observations (2013/2015) by Hayati MokhtarSingapore Art Museum

Hayati Mokhtar | Falim House: Observations (2013 - 2016)

This ten-channel video captures a series of ever-so-slight stirs and shifts that suggest to the viewer that these tableaus are, in fact, animated. These forlorn fragments document the interior and surroundings of the titular mansion, located in Ipoh – Falim House, built by Foo Nyit Tse, one of the wealthiest tin tycoons in Malaya in the early twentieth century. Today, it lies in a state of suggestive ruin, the Foo family having left most of their belongings behind, including furniture, antiques and personal letters.

Scanning (installation view) (2013) by Amy Lee SanfordSingapore Art Museum

Amy Lee Sanford | Scanning (2013)

In Scanning, Cambodian-born Amy Lee Sanford continues her investigation into notions of memory through the manipulation and re-presenting of a selection of some 250 found letters. The correspondence, which took place over a period of five years, was an exchange between her adopted mother in the United States, and biological father who remained in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, during the civil war of 1970–1975 under Lon Nol's reign, followed by the Khmer Rouge occupation in 1975.

There's a word I'm trying to remember, for a feeling I'm about to have (a distracted path towards extinction) (2016/2017) by Korakrit Arunanondchai and Alex GvojicSingapore Art Museum

Korakrit Arunanondchai / Alex Gvojic 

There's a word I'm trying to remember, for a feeling I'm about to have (a distracted path towards extinction) (2016 - 2017)

Credits: Story


'Maze Out'
Single-channel video (GIF animation) with sticker installation
Dimensions variable; duration 3:45 mins
Collection of the Artist
Commissioned by Singapore Art Museum

Victor Balanon
'The Man Who'
Single-channel black and white video projection with sound and site-specific wall painting
Dimensions variable; video duration 7:00 mins
Collection of the Artist
Commissioned by Singapore Art Museum

'Zsa Zsa Zsu'
Stop-motion animation, edition 3/5
Duration 4:42 mins
Singapore Art Museum collection

Jeremy Sharma
'A White, White Day'
Lightbox system mounted on a metal rack and horn speakers
200 × 240 × 40 cm
Collection of the Artist

The Propeller Group
'AK-47 vs. M16'
Fragments of AK-47 and M16 bullets, ballistics gel, glass and metal vitrine and single-channel video
Various dimensions: 139.7 × 62.9 × 32.4 cm (vitrine);
18.1 × 42.9 × 18.4 cm (ballistics gel); video duration 2:48 mins
Singapore Art Museum collection

The Propeller Group
'AK-47 vs. M16, The Film'
Single-channel video with sound
Duration 41:08 mins
Courtesy of The Propeller Group

Sarah Choo Jing
'Wear You All Night'
Two-channel video with sound
Duration 4:38 mins
Collection of the Artist

Ming Wong
'Making Chinatown'
Mixed-media installation featuring a five-channel video
Dimensions variable
Collection of the Artist

Hayati Mokhtar
'Falim House: Observations'
Ten-channel video with sound
Duration 16:04 mins
Singapore Art Museum collection

Amy Lee Sanford
Single-channel video
Duration 41:56 mins
Singapore Art Museum collection

Korakrit Arunanondchai / Alex Gvojic
'There’s a word I’m trying to remember, for a feeling I’m about to have
(a distracted path towards extinction)'
Mixed media installation with single-channel video, earth, found objects and bleached black denim pillows
Site-specific installation, dimensions variable, video duration 26:25 mins
Collection of the Artists

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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