From now till 6 June 2021, the public can look forward to 14 larger-than-life art installations along the 36km-long coast-to-coast trail, from Punggol to Jurong.
Through the creative expressions and artworks by various Singapore artists, the public will get to imagine a post-pandemic future and be uplifted by messages of resilience and hope.
Scroll down further to check out the various locations of these commissioned artworks - the first-ever public showcase to installed across the eight nature parks in Singapore:
Venue: Jurong Lake Gardens, Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park, Luxus Hills Park, Ang Mo Kio Linear Park, Punggol Waterway Park, Lorong Halus Wetlands (Lorong Halus Bridge), Sengkang Riverside Park, Lower Seletar Reservoir Park
Date: 22 Jan to 6 Jun 2021
Jurong Lake Gardens
It Takes Time (by Robert Zhao Renhui)
Photo Credit: Robert Zhao Renhui
Inspired by the importance of noticing subtle changes in nature, It Takes Time is a durational public art installation that tracks the development of a young tree at Jurong Lake Gardens over 11 months.
One side bears a textual message while the other presents a sequence of photographs of a growing tree, one to be unveiled every month. The work celebrates the beauty and simplicity of small changes and documents them in a way that engages and uplifts viewers.
Each time, one may notice the illumination of a new light box, signifying a continuous process of growth and change, which is the hopeful message of this artwork. Nature has gone on before, is going on and will go on. We can find some comfort in that.
When a Tree Becomes a Forest (by Ang Song Nian)
Photo Credit: Flyht Studio
A site-specific installation comprising 195 timber structures, each stylised as the Chinese character “木”, which translates into wood or tree. An ideogram, the character illustrates the crown (top), trunk (middle), and the spread of tree roots (bottom).
Marrying man-made interventions and natural elements, the artwork embodies the intimate interdependence between Man and Nature in the age of the Anthropocene - especially crucial in light of the global pandemic. Symbolising collective strength and unity, it also offers a gentle urging to not lose sight of the forest for the trees - ultimately, we are 'one' in rebuilding our future together.
Try viewing the work from different perspectives! You may glimpse the character "木" (wood/ tree), "林" (woods), or even "森" (forest) from an aerial view.
Ang Mo Kio Linear Park
BOND (by Jerome Ng and Zed Haan)
Photo Credit: @FinbarrFallon
An emphatic cross between a sculpture and a pavilion, BOND is an experiential exploration of the evolving interpersonal relationships and social bonds amidst the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
One questions if social distancing has created more separations and divergences. In the physical sense, we have indeed spent more time apart from each other. Yet on another level, it can be discerned that we have also become much more intimate beings internally — the space afforded around us during this pandemic period has actually allowed many to feel the most genuine in the longest time.
Included in the artwork is a 4-part poem reflecting upon strength and solidarity. When read as a whole, BOND reveals fresh nuances of how we connect in daily life in light of the new normal.
Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park
This Time (by Perception3)
Photo Credit: Seah Sze Yunn
Conceptualised during the ‘circuit breaker’ period in 2020, This Time reflects on our heightened sensitivities toward time, distances and proximities. The artwork features two sets of texts on both sides of the bridge: THIS TIME APART / THIS DISTANCE TOGETHER, LONGING FOR THE SKY / REACHING FOR THE SEA.
When read in the context of the pandemic, the texts direct our attention to this ‘moment’ in time where we are held apart, yet share a sense of longing together. Looking beyond the current situation, the texts are a reminder of life’s constant uncertainties, desires, and hopes.
As a site-responsive artwork, the texts are also in dialogue with the elements of the surrounding environment, such as the apartment blocks, the river, sky, and trees. When encountered together, they suggest a dynamic and perpetual connection to the rest of the city and beyond.
[ ] with Dual Possibilities (by Vertical Submarine)
Photo Credit: National Arts Council
This installation draws reference to an extract from ‘Fan Fiction’, a poem within Singaporean writer Yong Shu Hoong's publication Anatomy of a Wave (2021), about a generation of music lovers coming of age in the 80s to early 90s - “...out of quarter- / life crisis, hurtling out of doldrums quickly / To grandly enter the dawn of the 90s...”.
The line is imprinted onto a larger-than-life sculpture of an audio cassette, this time with keywords redacted, inviting viewers to mentally fill in the blanks based on their imagination. On the B-side, the Chinese phrase “危险机会'' utilises the device of code-switching and alludes to how opportunity is often embedded in crisis — akin to the complex times we live in today.
The artwork serves as a layered puzzle open to diverse permutations of decoding and interpretation, speaking volumes about the myriad of possibilities and uncertainties lying ahead.
HELLO STRANGER (by Dawn Ng)
Photo Credit: Dawn Ng
Conceived as a lenticular billboard nestled within a lush pocket of the park, HELLO STRANGER starts off unassumingly as a static sculpture, but evolves as a physical performance of revelation as one uncovers its intended text by approaching from various directions and proximities.
The prose speaks to the longing of our current generation, who has everything yet is always missing something. It contemplates on what one is looking for in life — Could it be embedded right here within our surroundings all along? Could we all be seeking something intangible, yet authentic and real?
Read in the context of the post-COVID world, the artwork is thus a staging of a tender, surreal peekaboo encounter with words. At once intimate and universal, it seeks to connect with audiences and inspire reflection.
Luxus Hills Park & Lower Seletar Park
Hey, How are You? (by Weimin Lai)
Photo Credit: National Arts Council
Hey, How Are You? is a typographic work that plays on the fundamental greeting of asking well. Beyond a perfunctory conversation opener, what happens when we use it with genuine intentions to listen and connect? A simple question paves the way for a deeper connection that enlightens and uplifts. Words are powerful and a force to be used constructively. They help to spell out emotional complexities, bringing about clarity and relief.
Adopts the visual metaphor of a flag, which is typically used in festive or ceremonial occasions to symbolise collective identity and solidarity.
Accompanied with thematic works written by local writer Yasira Yusoff, the work hopes to serve as a reminder to reach out and embrace our shared humanity.
There are three renditions in total - 2 at Lower Seletar Reservoir Park and 1 at Luxus Hills Park.
Sengkang Riverside Park
Anamorphic Vibes (by Adeline Loo and Cheong Yew Mun)
Photo Credit: Adeline Loo and Cheong Yew Mun
When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change – at the height of the global pandemic, two of the most frequently mentioned words were ‘anxiety’ and ‘courage’.
Drawing reference from this litmus test of the global emotional landscape, Anamorphic Vibes is a visual actualisation of the need for a perspective shift in times of crisis. As viewers walk around the artwork, the artwork reveals the words ‘anxiety’ and ‘courage’’ from different angles, posing a timely reminder of how there will always be light in darkness, opportunities in setbacks.
Upon closer observation, one sees that the artwork is constituted by networks of multi-hued threads intricately strung together by hand — alluding to our shared vulnerabilities and interconnectedness, as well as the need to garner strength and walk on together.
Every Seed Carries Within It The Dream And the Blueprint Of The Whole (by Hunny and Lummy)
Photo Credit: Hunny and Lummy
This art installation is a visual manifestation of a poignant line within Singapore author Alvin Pang's publication What Gives Us Our Name (2011), which happens to also be the artwork title.
It draws upon the profound yet simple idea that there is a seed of hope, aspirations, dreams, power and strength implanted in every single individual that has the potential to grow into something great right now, especially as the world is going through a major reset due to COVID-19.
As regenerative spaces nestled amidst nature, the seed pods carve out room for weary souls to recharge and cancel out the stress in everyday life. In doing so, the experience amplifies the notion that even if one feels tiny and helpless like a seed, one contains the potential to pursue dreams and actualise a life that counts.
Punggol Waterway Park
Distance Will Bring Me Closer To You (by Hanson Ho)
Photo Credit: Darren Soh
Distance Will Bring Me Closer To You is a site-specific installation, which reminds many of us of the ‘distant closeness’ which we may have experienced with a relative, friend or a loved one during the recent circuit breaker measures.
This may have taken the form of a rare phone call from a relative checking out how we are doing at home, an unexpected delivery of bubble tea couriered to us by friends and colleagues, or a Zoom conversation which proved to be more focused and memorable than a physical meetup which we often take for granted.
The textual mural, installed onto a 32-metre-long wall at Punggol Waterway Park, uses its length and connectedness as an appropriate metaphor to echo the message of the artwork, while the surrounding flows of human traffic become a part of the installation.
間 (Jian) (by Chery Chiw)
This ideogrammatic artwork takes its entry point from how the traditional Chinese character ‘間’ (jiān) is a composite of the sub-characters ‘門’(door) and ‘日’ (sun or day). As a whole, the character ‘間’ also denotes space or realm.
Symbolising a transition or passageway to a brand-new world of possibilities, 間 explores how the COVID-19 pandemic had created a momentary pause in our fast-paced lives, opening up a precious interval to reflect on how we have lived and how we choose to live moving forward. Be it an opportunity for a new beginning or an obstacle for what lies ahead, the ideogram of ‘日’ (sun or day) depicts the passing of time in a relentless and unceasing cycle.
Temporary Escapism (by Sam Lo)
Photo Credit: Sam Lo
10 signages and 1 mural distributed across the site with a dose of humour and aspiration.
Envisioning the public space as our playground, Temporary Escapism instills little doses of human touch as a way of easing us into a new post-circuit breaker reality. A helping hand and 'pick-me-up' as we transition into this deeply transformative rebirth of our time, the artwork seeks to remind us of our shared human experience through simple interactions with each other and our surroundings.
Still Travelling (by Laniakea Culture Collective)
Photo Credit: Laniakea Culture Collective
Still Travelling is an outdoor, site-specific art installation comprising a poem about migration, restlessness and refuge, accompanied by flags bearing the image of a barn swallow.
It is an experiential work that invites us to pause, view, walk and meditate. Who are we, really? Where have we come from? Where are we going? May this unexpected interlude in time evoke our empathy and aspirations. May it strengthen our resolve to rise again.
Lorong Halus Bridge
YELLOW (by James Tan and Petrina Dawn Tan)
Photo Credit: James Tan and Petrina Dawn Tan
Inspired by the poem above, this immersive artwork is set against two different directions of the bridge. The first stanza of the poem lines the vantage point for dawn while the last stanza faces the direction of dusk.
The two sets of uni-PVC drapes, akin to “viewing curtains”, bathe the Punggol-Serangoon Reservoir skyline in a warm glow which intensifies and cools off at various timings of the day. Their gently undulating curvatures resemble an impression of nature silhouetted during sunrise and sunset. By nightfall, a subtle glow emanates from LED strip lights coloured with yellow lighting gels.
YELLOW poses an encouragement to people to look beyond today and anticipate a warm and positive post-pandemic future. Not only should we cherish the present, but also work hard to secure a future often perceived to be a given.
This public art showcase is commissioned by the Public Art Trust (PAT) under the National Arts Council (NAC).