People of the Museum - January 2017 edition

By Bras Basah Bugis on Jan 2017

Is the museum best enjoyed alone, or better with company?

While aficionados may feel that good art is best appreciated when wandering through the displays at one’s own pace, there are others who find it more fun to have someone beside them to ask - is that piece of abstract art what I think it is?

At Singapore Art Museum, the anchor location for this year’s Singapore Biennale, we suss out the museum-going habits of some of the faces spotted.

1) Vanessa Yen, 23

“ I enjoy visiting the Singapore Art Museum as it allows me to connect with my artistic side through the exhibitions they organise and curate. Many of these exhibitions are thoughtfully put together and insightful, allowing me to understand the process and what goes through the minds of the artists as they produce these works.
I prefer visiting the museum with a friend who I can share my thoughts and experience with. I believe that such experiences are more enjoyable and enriching when I can engage with someone in a discussion.

Apart from visiting museums and indulging in their offerings, I actually enjoy walking around Singapore in general. I get absolutely thrilled with discovering every nook and cranny of a place, or simply embarking on a little adventure exploring abandoned places. I love taking photographs of nature and these trips serve as opportunities for me to immerse myself in my photography. Other than that, I appreciate piercings as I find them aesthetically beautiful.”


2) Nurul Shafawati bte Saini, 21 (left) & Nurul Syahirah bte Abdul Rashid, 21 (right)

Syahirah: “This is maybe the third or fourth time in the past five years my best friend and I have visited the museum together. We met in secondary school and we’ve been friends for eight years now.

While I do love having the company of Shafa, sometimes I go to the museum on my own. I love how nobody judges anyone in the museum when they’re seen alone. So I take the opportunity to stroll and make full use of my time to admire the art. It’s such a calming experience.

I feel that museum visits are useful as it exposes us to different views and beliefs. Sometimes, artists portray controversial issues through art and it widens your perspectives on topics you never thought you would be interested in. It makes you a better global citizen.

When I’m not at the museum or at school, I work with a theatre group called Celik Twofourfour. It’s a Malay drama company that runs acting workshops and public speaking classes. They also put up drama productions, some of which I’ve participated in. When I was in secondary three, I had my first theatre experience when I was roped in for a combined schools theatre production. From then on, I felt like theatre was something I really wanted to do. Today, I’m pursuing a minor in Theatre Studies in NUS.”


3) Muhammad Fawwaz Bin Amir, 17 

“I study visual effects and motion graphics at Singapore Polytechnic. The course really challenges my design thinking process and sometimes going to the museum helps me get inspiration to do my work.

The Singapore Art Museum is one of my favorite museums, not just for what’s in the museum but for its exterior and clean cut architecture as well.

Sometimes, people may find going to the museum boring because they may not fully understand the meaning behind the art pieces. They look at art from just one perspective and not explore the alternative angles as to why the artist would create such a piece of art.

Besides my interest in design, I’ve joined the skates club in school where I skateboard and inline skate once a week. I’m passionate about skating and when I skate, I am able to disengage and not think about anything else.

My favorite skateboarder is Tony Hawk, one of the pioneers in skateboarding. While I would love to skate more often, design school keeps me occupied with a lot of work.”

Look out for our next edition of People of the Museum, as we bring you more stories from museum-goers.