Regional clout takes centre stage

Regional clout takes centre stage
Utopia (2011) by Korean photographer Seung-Woo Back.

SINGAPORE - Singapore's top contemporary art fair, Art Stage Singapore, is building on its country platforms, taking a cue from what worked in its previous edition.

Last year, its unique offerings included its Indonesian Platform of contemporary Indonesian art, which won it spurs among gallerists, artists, curators and art lovers from around the globe.

Adding to the commercial fair element this year are eight curated country and regional platforms meant to showcase cutting-edge contemporary art from different parts of Asia.

Fair director Lorenzo Rudolf feels this is the way forward. "Collectors want to see a diversity of art from the region and not more of what they get to see internationally."

Life! spoke to curators of seven of the platforms and asked them to pick their highlights.

deepikas@sph.com.sg

JAPAN

Life (Corps sans Organes)

No.19, 2013

By Tatsuo Miyajima

Mixed media installation with LED and micro- computer by Ikegami programme Dimensions variable Installed on the wall and floor

Curator Mami Kataoka (above), 48, says this work best addresses the curatorial concept for the Japan Platform - Dark Matter: Invisible Presence.

She says: "The idea is to explore invisibility, the afterlife, awakened state and memory and consciousness." Miyajima is one of Japan's foremost sculptors and installation artists. He is known for using contemporary materials such as electric circuits, video and computers in his art.

The titles of his artwork generally have numbers to reference the journey from life to death. This is derived partially from Buddhist teachings as well as his core artistic concepts, which are about life that, in his words, "keeps changing" and "goes on forever".

Ms Kataoka notes of the installation: "While it is made by incorporating advanced technology, it still engages the fundamental issue of human existence."

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