Public art event pays homage to Little India's history, traditions

Public art event pays homage to Little India's history, traditions
Visitors taking photos of Miss Eunice Lim’s wall mural which is a nod to cattle trading, at Artwalk Little India, a public art event organised by the Singapore Tourism Board, Lasalle College of the Arts, and supported by the Little India Shopkeepers and Heritage Association.

The streets of Little India had an extra dose of creativity over the past five days.

Colourful murals, video screenings and live art exhibitions were a common sight, as part of Artwalk Little India, which ran from last Saturday till yesterday.

The public art event was organised by the Singapore Tourism Board and Lasalle College of the Arts, and supported by the Little India Shopkeepers and Heritage Association.

It was to celebrate the rich heritage and culture of Little India.

The artwork and installations were done by students and alumni from Lasalle College of the Arts, inspired by their interactions with long-term residents and shopkeepers in Little India.

One of the artworks was a wall mural by Miss Eunice Lim, 23.

CATTLE

The brightly-coloured mural, which took about two weeks to complete, is a nod to cattle trading, an industry traditionally dominated by Indians.

"I wanted to reignite the sense of home by bringing back elements of history and emphasising Little India's vibrant culture," said the Lasalle alumna, who now works as a visual artist.

Ms Tinu Verghis, 37, also showcased her work.

She created oversized footprints on the ground with coloured powder. Her artwork, titled Impermanent Footprints, encouraged visitors to step on the footprints to create eye-catching foot trails.

Said the Lasalle student: "Nothing in life is meant to last forever. Change is inevitable. Walking over my art would create new footprints."

The exhibition also featured the screening of Trade Life, a series of three outdoor video installations by another Lasalle student, Mr Dominic Tong, 26.

The installations show different pairs of hands at work in different Little India occupations.

Said Mr Tong: "I chose to focus on their hands because this is how these people earned their living. I wanted to give the hands a life of their own."

Mr Poh Chi Chuan, director of tourism concept development at the Singapore Tourism Board, said Little India plays a vital role in telling the multicultural story of Singapore.

"We are happy to work with Lasalle to develop Artwalk Little India, so that we can continue our efforts to cultivate an appreciation of our rich cultural heritage in the next generation," he added.


This article was first published on January 22, 2015.
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