The Edible Art Movement invites you to take a step back, to literally touch the soil we live on and connect with something so simple yet profound: rice.
In the centre of Singapore’s newly invigorated cultural and heritage district, the Edible Art Movement is cooking something up. This group of local and international artists invite you to join them in nurturing an Urban Rice Paddy which will grow in the public outdoor space at the National Library Building.
The site-specific art installation will use the symbolic grid of a traditional farmed rice paddy – delving into historical themes in the context of contemporary art – whilst encouraging your creativity to be nurtured alongside the rice.
Rice, culture, creativity
Rice and Asia are deeply associated. The first recorded stories of rice come from China, one of the world’s oldest civilizations. As humans moved on from hunting to an agricultural-based gathering society, the rice paddy became a ritualistic celebration of community engagement, spiritual and human connection. Singing, dancing, feasting and story-telling mark particular points of the season.
The EAM has always been interested in the ability of food to act as a stimulus to creativity, drawing people together in a celebratory atmosphere – not just around the dinner table but also throughout the growing, cultivating and harvesting process.
The Edible Art Movement aims to thrill the mind and senses with with themes inspired by the edible world. This month EAM will again harness the power of art and food to connect people and cultures, to link us with our pasts and futures.
The installation features exciting names from the emerging contemporary art scene. As with all EAM exhibitions, a talented team of artists comes together to create the artwork collaboratively, and several artists additionally create their own distinct elements within the art installation:
Stellah Lim Chii Cze, (previously exhibited at exhibited at SAM, Chan Hampe and Yavuz among others), will present a series of texts or images to be found inside or emblazoned upon the installation, relating to the farming process of rice & farmers.
Ceramic artists Steven Low Thia Kwang and Ng Yang Ce will host an interactive demonstration on 30th May, when participating visitors will be guided through the making of their own petite rice bowl. Catch Steven with EAM before he leaves for his residency as the selected Singaporean artist at the Jakarta Contemporary Ceramics Biennale.
Meanwhile the founder of SCYA, Jacquelyn Soo, will be presenting a community artwork created for Singaporeans to evoke memories of their relationship to local cuisine and to explore ideas of food security, sustainability in the global market.
In conceptualising & growing a paddy field in Singapore, artist Kanchana Gupta has swapped her heavily textured and landscaped oil paint for soil, water and rice. For this, she draws from her childhood nostalgia in rural India where her father is a farmer.
The installation will be free, and is part of the Asian Festival of Children’s Content, run by the National Book Development Council of Singapore and hosted by the National Library.
31st May, 7.00pm – 9.00pm
BYO rice: The Edible Art Movement Picnic
Join us in a BYO picnic: Meet artists & writers, gather round, tell your story or hear the stories of others – rice is about connecting people, so come and be part of a community. We have some beautiful EAM gifts for all who join in, so bring a rice-based dish, bring a drink, and invite your friends!
2nd & 3rd June, 10.00 – 4.00pm
‘Good Rice Nation: Mi & my Story’, an interactive event with Jacquelyn Soo
Exploring local rice culture and the attachment to food, Soo & the EAM artists will work together with participants to create a community recipe book. Share your recipes and become part of the publication.
Stellah Lim Chii Cze
A series of used rice bowls & plates with texts or images related to the farming process of rice & farmers have been created by Stellah, which are part of the whole installation. On the last day of the exhibition, it will be your chance to have and give a home to one of these unique pieces.