The President’s Young Talents recognises and supports promising Singaporean artists below the age of 35, whose practices chart new dimensions in Singapore contemporary art today. The Singapore Art Museum (SAM) announced the artist selection for the 2015 edition: Ang Song Ming, Bani Haykal, Ezzam Rahman, Loo Zihan and Ong Kian Peng. They were selected by an independent curatorial committee of local art professionals for the strength and promise of their practice, their potential for growth, and the contributions they will make to the larger contemporary art scenes both internationally and locally. This year’s curatorial committee is made up of artists, curators and art educators. They are: Mr Ian Woo, Mr Noor Effendy Ibrahim, Ms Twardzik Ching Chor Leng, Mr Vincent Leow and SAM curator Ms Michelle Ho.
The President’s Young Talents is Singapore’s earliest art award dedicated to contemporary art practices. Inaugurated in 2001 as an exhibition to recognise the contemporary art practices of emerging local artists, the President’s Young Talents has supported emerging generations of Singapore artists such as Heman Chong and Lim Tzay Chuen, who have gone on to advance their practices on various fronts like the Singapore Pavilion at the Venice Biennale.
A very important and unique aspect of the President’s Young Talents exhibition is curatorial mentorship. The artists will each be paired with a member of the curatorial committee, who will mentor and guide them in developing their proposal for the commissioning project. This allows for an exchange of ideas and critical discourse between the artists and curatormentors. In-depth dialogue, critical thinking and exchanges with the curator-mentors will help the artists refine their art making process and the development of their work.
The President’s Young Talents exhibition will be on from 20 August 2015 to 31 January 2016 at Singapore Art Museum.