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7 Art Exhibitions In Singapore You Have To See This Month

#1: Shirazeh Houshiary: The River is Within Us at Singapore Tyler Print Institute
The River Is Within Us is the first solo exhibition of UK-based Iranian artist Shirazeh Houshiary (b.1955) in Southeast Asia. Along with new works she created during the residency, the gallery displays her 2013 Venice Biennale piece “Breath,” a multimedia installation where the chants of different religious prayers emanate from four video screens.   #1: Shirazey Houshiary: The River is Within Us at Singapore Tyler Print Institute
For the works created during a residency specifically for this exhibition, Houshiary has combined thin layers of handmade paper with Perspex to highlight a single word selected from Hebrew, Sanskrit, Arabic, Mandarin and Latin languages. Shirazeh said the colours – gradient turquoise, blues, pinks and purple – represent the emotional states and the different nationalities. She has also created a series of indigo etchings titled “Migrants” that depict scenes of foliage appearing above us, which she found during her stay here. March 19-May 7, Singapore Tyler Print Institute, 41 Robertson Quay   #2: Chun Kai Feng: The Key to this Mystery is to Rephrase the Question Slightly at FOST Gallery
A witty tongue-in-cheek exhibition, Chun takes unremarkable objects from our everyday surroundings — air diffusers, food trays, doors — and removes them from their original contexts, asking us to question their relevance. A door, for example, is upon closer inspection simply a large piece or glass, while the wet floor sign stands on one leg with the other flying up in the air – as if didn’t heed its own advice. March 12-April 30, FOST Gallery, Gillman Barracks, #01-02 Lock Road     #3: Charles Lim: Sea State at NTU CCA
The much-talked about exhibition that represented Singapore at the Venice Biennale last year is opening later this month at the NTU CCA. Former sailor Charles Lim (b.1973) explores Singapore’s difficult relationship with the sea through artworks like maps, charts and video installations grouped around a 5m-tall aluminium buoy encrusted with barnacles and sea life. Lim’s concept? To show how the seas in Singapore have changed over the years, with land being reclaimed and islands slowly becoming part of the mainland.   #3: Charles Lim: Sea State at NTU CCA
Based on the story of Pulau Sajahat, an island that disappeared off the maps in 2002, Lim set out to recreate the buoy that would have once marked it. He submerged the replica he made in offshore waters so it’d deteriorate and gather barnacles, and then transported it to the Arsenale in Venice (a historic shipping yard) where it was displayed. This “Sajahat Buoy” artwork has now been re-sunk in Singapore and will be fished out from the sea in the coming weeks. Along with the works that were exhibited in Venice, the Singapore version will also present a few older pieces, such as his photographic series inside/outside and a short film titled all lines flow out, which won a Special Mention at the 68th Venice Film Festival in 2011. April 30-July 10, NTU CCA, Gillman Barracks, Block 43 Malan Road #4: Zheng Lu: Reflections on Still Water at Sundaram Tagore Galleries
Shown at Art Stage Singapore earlier this year, Zheng’s (b.1978) fluid stainless steel forms resemble splashes of water frozen in mid-air. With an interest in poetry and language, they’re made up of thousands of Chinese characters laser cut into metal and then hand-welded together. When we think of sculptures we tend to think of them as heavy, solid and grounded, and these seemingly weightless works subvert that idea. April 15-May 19, Sundaram Tagore Galleries, Gillman Barracks, 5 Lock Road  #5: Esmond Loh: States of Being at Chanhampe Galleries
Born in 1995, the young art student won the 31st UOB Painting of the Year Competition 2012 at the age of 17. The poignant paintings in his second solo exhibition at the gallery – featuring pensive characters in various quotidian environments like a hospice, classroom or a park bench – are drawn from his own recalled, blurred memories and photographic references. He’s definitely an artist to watch. April 12-30, Chanhampe Galleries, Raffles Hotel, 1 Beach Road   #6: Fall into Oblivion: Yang Yonggliang at Pearl Lam Galleries
A series of paintings by Chinese artist Yang Yongliang (b. 1980) alongside a new feature-length film that give the exhibition its title. The black and white hour-long film is inspired by “The Peach Blossom Spring”, a Liu Song dynasty fable about a fisherman who comes across a hidden utopia, completely cut off from the modern outside world. Interested in this relationship between the manmade world and nature, Yang used cement in his paintings to create large mountainous forms as well as digitally adding pictures of cranes and skyscrapers to images of natural wonders. April 2-May 2, Pearl Lam Galleries, Gillman Barracks, 1 Lock Road    #7: Reframing Modernism: Painting from Southeast Asia, Europe and Beyond at the National Gallery Singapore
A groundbreaking collaboration with France’s Centre Pompidou, it’s the first time an exhibition on the theme of “modernism” is happening from the perspective of South East Asia, rather than from Europe. With more than 200 works from 51 artists, the works are not hung chronologically but instead sees works by Southeast Asian artists like Georgette Chen (Singapore), Nguyễn Gia Trí (Vietnam), S Sudjojono (Indonesia), Hernando R Ocampo (the Philippines) and Tang Chang (Thailand) hung alongside famous masterpieces by Pablo Picasso, Marc Chagall, Matisse and Wassily Kandinsky from the Pompidou. #7: Reframing Modernism: Painting from Southeast Asia, Europe and Beyond at the National Gallery Singapore
Eugene Tan, director of the less-than-year old museum, said in a Straits Times interview that the exhibition challenges the idea that Modernism started in Europe and then spread elsewhere, but that it was actually happening all over the world. It’s a rare chance to see masterpieces by the European masters without having to buy a plane ticket to Paris too. March 31-July 17, National Gallery of Singapore, 1 St Andrew’s Road Like this? Check out these fashion exhibitions in Tokyo, Los Angeles, London and Singapore.