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5 Things To Check Out This Week: A Surreal Interactive Exhibition, Climate Crisis Festival & More

An edit of things to do in Singapore this week.

1. Check out an interactive art exhibition

Motion artist and illustrator Reza Hasni is well known for his surreal technicolour visuals that have been displayed across monuments such as the Asian Civilisations Museum. The artist is back with his second solo show, titled Centre for Altered Togetherness, presented by new art programming consultancy Mama Magnet. Center for Altered Togetherness is a trippy online interactive exhibition where elements of the natural and the virtual are blurred together in what the artist terms as a “hyperreality”.

Expect to encounter a total of six unique worlds within this hyperreality, each with its own visual grammar and addressing a specific topic. For example, Motherearth utilises a maze to illustrate the delicate balance between man and nature. The experience was developed in collaboration with interactive designer Tiong Hong Siah, sound designer Tengo La Firma and curator Tulika Ahuja of Mama Magnet. If you’re a fan of Reza’s works, 10 of his art prints – each based on the worlds he created for this exhibition – will also be available on the webstore.

Center for Altered Togetherness takes place from August 7 to Dec 31 here

2. Watch this series of intimate performances

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This quiet piece… is probably the most difficult thing I’ve ever written and performed, my whole life. @dotgifdotgif’s Hail Nothing took years to finish; @subshaman’s songs are crazy challenging; Beside Ourselves was 300 hours of rehearsal; Displaced Persons’ Welcome Dinner was an impossible task… and yet this little thing took more out of me than I have ever given to a work. But as I was shaking in front of lights and cameras… the @checkpointheatre team stood by with tissues, hot milo, and endless warmth. @huzirsulaiman cried with me during our final take and in those silent, shared sniffles… I could feel the air in the room wrap its arms around me. You don’t have to like it –– it’s awkward, frenzied, uncomfortable… and perhaps just solipsistic ramblings. But it means the world to me that I was given this voice, and the safe space to lay myself bare in a way I never thought I could. I am deeply honoured to be a part of Two Songs and a Story, especially alongside this stellar cast –– @theadrops @thisisinch @jodecro @msdorai, directed by @huzirsulaiman and @joely_moley. The show opens this Thursday and runs till 31 Aug✨ I can’t wait to see what the other 4 artists did with their pieces. You can watch this from anywhere in the world! Tickets are on sale at SISTIC now –– link in @checkpointtheatre’s bio / more info in my stories! Your ticket will be a link that allows you to watch any / all of our works within 72 hours. I do hope you join us 🤍 x

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The plays by local theatre outfit Checkpoint Theatre are often infused with nuanced and deeply human takes on social issues, and their latest work, Two Songs and a Story, is an online video series that explores the many life and relationship complexities that came about as a result of these messed up times. It features original music and monologues by five performers-writers – Weish, Inch Chua, Jo Tan, Rebekah Sangeetha Dorai and ants chua.

“Two Songs and a Story is our creative and constructive response to and about the ongoing pandemic – the stories crafted are intimate and authentic, offering audiences a shared space to breathe and to reflect on moments in their lives along with the artists,” says playwright Huzir Sulaiman, joint artistic director of Checkpoint Theatre. If you’ve been feeling out of sorts during this period, tuning into this series of performances might just be the balm you need. Get your tickets here.

Two Songs and a Story takes place from August 6 to 31. Details here.

3. Book a place at this exquisite patissier

Kki’s plated dessert

Japanese-inspired patissier Kki has long been an open favourite with foodies and the design crowd  with their delicate confections and after a hiatus of three years, they’re finally reopened at Raffles Hotel (at the space that used to house lifestyle and furniture store Foundry). That said, if you’re familiar with Kki, don’t go expecting their classic hits such as the Antoinette or Montblanc cakes. It’s an entirely new menu at the new store – and you can’t just drop in as and when you like either. Just be sure to make reservations ahead of time (they’re almost fully booked for the first half of August already) as Kki is now operating more along the lines of a restaurant rather than a cake shop.

4. Get a crash course on the climate crisis

Though environmental activism has generally been overshadowed by the coronavirus for the moment, the two are not wholly disconnected: research has proven that with people’s always growing expansion into natural habitats, it brings us closer and closer to wildlife, and hence the risk of cross-species viruses making the jump to humans is much more possible. This can only mean one thing: Covid-19, as globally crippling as it already is, is but one pandemic; more will likely rise in the future.

Climate collective SG Climate Rally, which organised Singapore’s first physical rally for the cause last Sept, has put together a virtual festival with several other social justice groups, in a bid to build stronger links between environmental groups and social justice activists, drawing on the intersectional nature of the climate crisis.

Check out the virtual festival here; it runs from August 8 to August 23

5. Sign up for free art programs

If you haven’t heard, the National Gallery Singapore is now offering a free one-year Gallery Insider membership – all ongoing exhibitions are also free of charge. This makes the Gallery a prime spot to head down to this long weekend. And while you’re there, make sure to check out the illuminated facade (facing the Padang) after hours, where 60 original artworks by local artists will be projected to commemorate Singapore’s 55th year of independence and as a show of solidarity in this difficult period.

Ongoing

Cover Photo Courtesy of Reza Hasni and Mama Magnet