Popular art walkabout canned

Popular art walkabout canned
Artist Alan Oei in a room which is part of the interactive experiential exhibition The End Of History, where audience members are led through a shophouse filled with paintings.

SINGAPORE - OH! Open House, the popular annual art walkabout which turned Housing Board flats and Marina Bay offices into temporary public galleries, has been put on hold.

Started in 2009, OH! Open House, which was last held in January, has received a warm reception for its four editions in Selegie, Marine Parade, Tiong Bahru and the Marina Bay financial area, drawing more than 5,000 visitors in total.

But its creator Alan Oei, 37, says the lack of funds is the main reason for shelving the event "indefinitely".

Each edition cost between $150,000 and $200,000 to stage, but only 30 per cent of this was covered by grants and corporate sponsorship last year. Despite healthy ticket sales, the project still ended up in the red.

"Open House was me trying to create new ways for people to experience art," he explains.

"You don't always just go and consume art, you have a tour and going in a group is a social experience as well."

A painter, curator and the artistic director of art space Sculpture Square, Oei is now finding other ways to create such unique projects, such as his upcoming experiential exhibition.

Called The End Of History, it opens at an undisclosed location on Friday and is a spin-off of his controversial 2009 performance, These Children Are Dead.

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