Overheard: Young artists who dare

Published on 17 August 2018

Showcase of visual art works by Year 6 students from the School of the Arts.

To bring people together like no one else can – that is the role budding artists at the School of the Arts (SOTA) see themselves playing in Singapore and the world. Three Year 6 SOTA students, who had their works featured in the school’s recent visual arts showcase, tell A List their aspirations and what they think of Singapore’s creative culture.

Q: What does being an artist in today’s world mean to you?

Mark Sng: It is to be someone who creates things that engage the community, such as an experience that provokes thoughts and ideas in others. For the individual, the process of art-making encourages one to see and understand his reality with fresh eyes; it is a journey of self-discovery. Being an artist is more than just assuming an archetypal role or profession, it is a way of living.

Janice Yap: An artist creates something that provokes thinking in ways which people of other professions cannot. When artists do that, art becomes a reflection of reality, and their works turns the gallery into an open platform for discussion and a possible springboard for change.

Jacinta Yee: Providing insight into society, with a dose of creativity and imagination.

Q: What do you think of Singapore’s creative culture?

Mark Sng: It is growing, especially among today’s youth. Events such as the Singapore Night Festival, i Light Marina Bay, and Art Stage Singapore provide Singaporeans with alternative perspectives and ideas through the arts, and inspire them to be more creative.

Janice Yap: It is moving into mainstream culture. You see it, for example, in the clothing and merchandise that we buy. There is more appreciation for artsy stuff.

Jacinta Yee: It is making its presence felt in Singapore’s pragmatic society. There is increased awareness of the importance of arts and culture, and I look forward to people embracing it in their everyday lives.

The replies have been edited and condensed.

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