Art exhibitions in Singapore you don’t want to miss

The art agenda: All things artsy-fartsy in Singapore to keep you cultured
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Photography: Asian Civilisations Museum

Calling all culture vultures. These art exhibitions are right up your alley!

2021 is looking pretty good (given the Covid-19 circumstances), what with new restaurants and bars to hit, plus amazing musicals to catch. What about the art scene, you ask? Well, it’s safe to say we’ve got you covered. Bookmark this page, art enthusiasts, as we’ll be updating it regularly with exciting art exhibitions throughout the year.

Art exhibitions in 2021

1. Life in Edo | Russel Wong in Kyoto

Till 19 Sep 2021
Presented in collaboration with Kobe Shimbun and Singaporean photographer Russel Wong, the double-bill exhibition is all about the culture and craftsmanship from the Land of the Rising Sun. The first part, Life in Edo, explores the Edo period (from 1603 to 1868) through a collection of woodblock prints. Then travel to modern-day Kyoto with 40 black and white photographs depicting the architecture, nature and the vanishing traditions of geisha.
Life in Edo | Russel Wong in Kyoto, Asian Civilisations Museum, 1 Empress Place, Singapore 179555

2. Rewritten: The World Ahead of Us

Till 6 June 2021

Art exhibitions in Singapore | Rewritten: The World Ahead of Us
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Photography: Finbarr Fallon

Now here’s something we don’t see often. Commissioned by the Public Art Trust under the National Arts Council, this outdoor art exhibition takes place across the 36km-long coast-to-coast trail. As you trek your way from Jurong to Punggol, come across 14 art installations that give you a glimpse into the post-pandemic future. These text-based works offer optimism and hope by breathing new life to poetry by well-known Singaporean poets. And if you were wondering, it would probably take a day and a half to check out all the exhibits by foot.
Rewritten: The World Ahead of Us, various locations

3. The Migrant

Till 30 May 2021
Dutch photographer Anaïs López uses the ubiquitous Java mynah as her muse in this thought-provoking exhibition. Featuring mixed-media works like photographs, videos and texts, follow the story of the mynah. What was introduced as pets from Bali in the early 1900s are now considered nothing more than pesky pests. The bird is a mere metaphor of important themes like migration, rapid urbanisation and the relationship between animals and humans.
The Migrant, Objectifs – Centre for Photography & Film, 155 Middle Road, Singapore 188977

4. The Office, Disrupted

Till 13 May 2021
Presented by Paperspace Asia in partnership with DesignSingapore Council, The Office, Disrupted explores the future of work. The data-led exhibition examines the hybrid work model, how workspace designs might change and what is the ideal work-life balance. There will also be panel sessions to further the discussion on topics like redesigning business during change, work culture, and mobility.
The Office, Disrupted, National Design Centre, 111 Middle Road, Singapore 188969

5. Star Wars Identities

Till 13 June 2021

Art exhibitions in Singapore | Star Wars Identities
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Photography: Marina Bay Sands & Lucasfilm

The force is strong with this one! ArtScience Museum is the final stop of the iconic exhibition’s global tour, featuring about 200 authentic props, models, costumes and artwork from the original Star Wars films. Whether you’re an avid fan or a casual viewer, you’ll no doubt recognise familiar faces like Darth Vader, R2-D2, Chewbacca, Boba Fett and Yoda at this showcase. Plus, take a peek into the art of filmmaking with early concept drawings, storyboarding and model making. Delving into human identity themes like origins, influences and choices, the interactive exhibition also lets you create your own one-of-a-kind character along the way, complete with talents and background stories.
Star Wars Identities, ArtScience Museum, Marina Bay Sands, 6 Bayfront Avenue, Singapore 018974

6. Once Upon A Time on The Orient Express

Till 12 Sep 2021

Once Upon A Time on The Orient Express
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Photography: Lola Hakimian

The iconic train comes to Asia, making Singapore the first country outside France to host a showcase featuring the mysterious and magnificent Orient Express. Expect to see original train carriages, historical artefacts, glimpses of international stopovers and scenic cities on the train’s route, and a merch corner for collectors’ items. Plus, check out the escape room experience, a replica restaurant car with a Michelin-starred chef, and a cafe.
Once Upon A Time on The Orient Express, West Lawn, Gardens by the Bay, 18 Marina Gardens Drive, Singapore 018953

7. Picturing the Pandemic: A Visual Record of COVID-19 in Singapore

Till 29 Aug 2021
Here’s a theme close to home. This poignant art exhibition documents the Covid-19 pandemic in Singapore using visuals, a short film, voice recordings and objects. Go on an introspective journey as the exhibition paints a vivid portrait of the city’s experience with the pandemic. Think photographs taken during the circuit break period, the first used Pfizer BioNTech vaccine in a sealed bag and more.
Picturing the Pandemic: A Visual Record of COVID-19 in Singapore, National Museum of Singapore, 93 Stamford Road, Singapore 178897

8. Georgette Chen: At Home In The World

Till 26 September 2021

Art exhibitions in Singapore | Georgette Chen
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Photography: National Gallery Singapore

Who is Georgette Chen? She is a painter who pioneered the Nanyang style of art in Singapore. Learn about Chen’s fascinating life at The National Gallery as she is the subject of a retrospective exhibition. Held across two galleries, the showcase features significant works alongside new finds, spanning five decades and three continents. Noteworthy pieces include Malay Wedding (1962), East Coast Vendor (1962) and Vegetables and Claypot (1940 – 1947), which is believed to be painted during WWII when she and her husband were under house arrest in Hong Kong. You can also catch the docu-drama The Worlds Of Georgette Chen on Channel News Asia On-Demand to know about her biography.
Georgette Chen: At Home In The World, National Gallery Singapore, 1 St Andrew’s Road, Singapore 178957

9. Sikhs in Singapore – A Story Untold

Till 30 Sep 2021
We love that Singapore is a melting pot of cultures. There’s always something to learn and discover. This time ‘round, take a closer look at the Sikh community in Singapore with this exhibition. Held at the Indian Heritage Centre, Sikhs in Singapore – A Story Untold narrates the Sikh story through three parts, from the origins story to the migration experience to perspectives from modern-day Sikhs.
Sikhs in Singapore – A Story Untold, Indian Heritage Centre, 5 Campbell Lane, Singapore 209924

10. Museum of Ice Cream

From Aug 2021

Museum of Ice Cream
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Photography: Museum of Ice Cream

We scream for ice cream! The lush enclave of Dempsey will be welcoming the world-famous Museum of Ice Cream in August 2021.  Known for its interactive and ‘gram-friendly exhibits in New York City, the Singapore outpost is said to feature 14 never-before-seen installations such as the sprinkle pool, a pink and yellow jungle filled with 10,000 bananas and more. And what’s a museum about ice cream without actually trying the icy treat? As you’re guided through the pastel wonderland, you will be treated to five unique ice-cream treats.
Museum of Ice Cream, 100 Loewen Road, Singapore 248837

Get your dose of arts and culture at these art exhibitions in Singapore.

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