Of the numerous usages of a convex mirror, its most common employment is in the passenger-side mirror of a car where it provides an essential field of view for any motorist on the road. However, the perception of distance becomes slightly altered: objects in these mirrors become smaller, and therefore appear to be of a greater distance from the car.
In many ways, the Dakota estate in Singapore has been reflected within a similar convexity in recent times: since the announcement of its demolition slated in 2016, the entire neighbourhood has been the loci for pop culture producers, academics, heritage enthusiasts and photographers.
But from the same convexity, details are diminished. How about the crevices of the neighbourhood not captured in the repeated landscapes and narratives of its personalities and landmarks? What if the micro details that are missed can be found when we remember that in their convex diminution, objects in the mirror are, in fact, closer and nearer than they appear?
Rendering the estate through labels as text surtitles that narrate spatial and material encounters throughout the scattered-site, this work provides an alternative mise en scene to the existing cultural status, meanings and collective imagination attached to the site–making it available for active re-appropriation through a situated interpretation.
Objects in the Mirror Are Closer than They Appear is presented by Joey Chin and Selene Yap.
Joey Chin (b. 1986, Singapore) is a writer and visual poet. Her MFA is from the City University of Hong Kong. An emerging academic, her research on visuals as symbolism in poetry has been awarded the Outstanding Academic Papers by Run Run Shaw Library and was most recently presented at The International Center for Comparative Sinology at Xuzhou, China. In October, she was a winner in the 2015 Ethnographic Poetry Prize where her English lyric works based on the etymology of the Chinese script was awarded by the American Anthropological Association.
Selene Yap (b. 1988, Singapore) is a gallery manager with Chan Hampe Galleries. From 2014 to 2015, she was a member of Curating Lab, a curatorial mentorship programme by National University of Singapore (NUS) Museum. Her interests in multiple and ongoing discursive engagements that characterize urban culture is a development from her studies in NUS where she read Sociology and Southeast Asian Studies.
Venue: Block 16, Dakota Crescent, S(390016)
Opening: Saturday, 31 October 2015, 2pm – 3pm
at Block 10, outside Care and Friends Centre
When: 31 Oct - 14 Nov 2015,