Taking inspiration from a wordplay of ‘alma mater’, Alma Matter is curated by NAFA alumnus Khairuddin Hori and features the work of fine art alumni who graduated in the recent 10 years. In original Latin, ‘alma’ refers to the act of ‘nourishing’. It is paired here with ‘matter’, referencing affairs that concern the artists and their practices. Put together, Alma Matter alludes to the artists’ past training at the academy while simultaneously looks into their place in today’s contemporary art landscape.
Artists presented in Alma Matter engage with multiple disciplines and utilise new approaches and uncommon mediums in their practices. Take, for example, Ezzam Rahman’s sculptures made of his own skin or Sebastian Mary Tay’s photographs composed of sawdust, fog and light. Ella Wijt engages with faith and womanhood, while Cai Xiang elucidates the void between the conscious and subconscious as a reaction to personal health conditions. Also on display are the camp and pageantry captured in the short-lived, gender-probing artistic practice of Khairul Ikhwan (deceased).
Usually associated with the notion of an academy combining orthodox Western and Chinese art traditions, these artists have moved on to establish themselves in the spirit of the contemporary and are emblematic of the ‘now’. Through their works, they have gravitated beyond local and regional concerns to incorporate a universalism that connects with human experiences.
Artists: Samuel Chen, Khairul Ikhwan, Warren Khong, Fiona Koh, Loi Cai Xiang, Justin Loke, Ong Si Hui, Ezzam Rahman, Sebastian Mary Tay, Ella Wijt
Venue: Chan + Hori Contemporary, Gillman Barracks, 6 Lock Road, #02-09, Singapore 108934
When: 24 May - 17 Jun 2018, 11am - 7pm