Arts Picks: Southeast Asian artists reflect on their culture and geography in 3 exhibitions

Landscape: reinvention

Kemalezedine trained as an artist at the Bandung Institute of Technology. When he moved to Bali in 2012, he found the characteristics of Balinese art – with its exotic foreign influences – “untenable”, writes the curator Santy Saptari. To remedy this, her strategy was to deconstruct specific Balinese visual iconography, from street art to landscape, while honoring and acknowledging its complex history, Ms Santy adds.

Recurring motifs are mountains, some depicted as erupting and suggesting volatility.

Savanhdary Vongpoothorn deals with her cultural heritage in a more placid way, perhaps because of the sadness and loss she has experienced. Forced to flee communist rule in the Lao People’s Democratic Republic at the age of eight, she and her family found their way to Australia, and through a very different environment and culture.

Vongpoothorn can never go back, but this experience of transmigration remains in a spiritual form in her work, where references to Buddhism, traditional Lao script and family leave indelible traces in her art.

Where: 39+ Art Space, 03-01 Tanjong Pagar Distripark, 39 Keppel Road
MRT: Tanjong Pagar
When: Until October 30, Tuesday to Friday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.; weekends, noon to 6 p.m. By appointment only on Mondays and public holidays
Admission: Free

Pleats and creases

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