26 Apr 2020 - 20 Jun 2020 @NUS Museum - Free with registration.
Sites, Stories and Subsequence is a prep-room project with Asia Research Institute that excavates, assembles and envisages the complex physical and immaterial tapestries of the Southern Islands, with a specific focus on St John’s and Lazarus Islands, formerly known as Pulau Sekijang Bendera/Besar and Pulau Sekijang Pelepah/Kechil, as well as Seringat Island. Drawing on archival research, oral history interviews, and surveys of its current uses, the project attempts to consolidate knowledge on the islands.
This current iteration surveys what could be missing in the consciousness of these islands, and redefines the shifts that are found in its names and functions, thereby furnishing the lacuna present in contemporary understandings of their culture and history. With only vestiges of the islands’ former features and attendant narratives existing presently, the repository of research and memories in the prep-room also informs its further function of providing prompts for re-imaginations of the Southern Islands’ future potentials.
The opening programme will begin with introductory remarks by Principal Investigator Dr Hamzah Muzaini, followed by a tour of the prep-room and its current components given by the team of Asia Research Institute researchers. Audiences are invited to write any stories, memories or experiences they may have of the Southern Islands on the maps and exhibits during this programme.
About the team
Consisting of six researchers led by principal investigator Dr Hamzah Muzaini from the Asia Research Institute (ARI), National University of Singapore, the prep-room in the NUS Museum was conceived in conjunction with the team’s ongoing ARI project entitled Mapping the Southern Islands’ Heritage Landscape: Integrating Culture and Nature in Heritage Conservation. Funded by the National Heritage Board, the team seeks to develop a holistic picture of heritage landscapes in Singapore, with its specific interest in the Southern Islands potentially framing future developments.
About prep-room DRILLS
prep-room DRILLS is a series of public presentations of ongoing research and studio works by invited practitioners and researchers. Invited to work around the open-ended framework of the NUS Museum’s prep-room, the collaborators engage with the framework of the prep-room and its features to interpose objects within the permanent collection or research trajectories of the NUS Museum. DRILLS introduces many explicit and tacit modes of working by the artists and researchers within the context of a university museum.
Supported by: National Heritage Board & Asia Research Institute (NUS)
Image: Cordoned off housing quarters on St. John’s Island. Its roof was removed and walls partially demolished when asbestos was found in some of the structures at the beginning of last year. Taken during the ARI team’s third field trip on 8 November 2018. Image courtesy of Grace Chong.