Clara Chow

Clara Chow

Clara Chow (Singapore) is the author of two short-story collections: Dream Storeys (2016) and Modern Myths (2018). The former was born out of interviews with Singapore architects about their imaginary buildings, while the latter reworks Greek myths in Singaporean settings.

Her work has also been published in the likes of Columbia Journal, Asia Literary Review, Cha, Litro and Quarterly Literary Review Singapore (QLRS). In 2018, she was awarded Prairie Schooner‘s Jane Geske Award for her story “Siren (Redux) by Haley Tien-Warrior – 25th Anniversary Oral History/DJ Cliffhanger Remix – MUST LISTEN! THE FEELS…Awesome…”.

A former journalist and arts correspondent, she has taught creative writing at Nanyang Technological University and English literature at the Singapore University of Social Studies. She co-founded the online literary and art journal WeAreAWebsite.com in 2015. 

Clara is a writer in our Southeast Asian Arts Residency program of 2018. At Rimbun Dahan, she is working on a joss-paper novel, meant to be burnt after reading. The work will explore taboos associated with book-burning, funeral rituals and Asian superstition.

Links to stories online:

“Bare Bones”

http://columbiajournal.org/fiction-by-clara-chow-bare-bones/

Excerpt from “The Wheel”

https://www.asiancha.com/content/view/3385/692/

Excerpt from “Siren (Redux)…”

https://muse.jhu.edu/article/686564/pdf

Shermaine Heng

Shermaine Heng

Shermaine is a Singaporean contemporary dance choreographer. She completed a Bachelor of Arts (Mass Comm & Political Science) at the University of Melbourne before embarking on a full-time career in dance. She then studied a Postgraduate Diploma in Performance Creation (Choreography) and subsequently, a Master of Dance at the Victorian College of the Arts in Melbourne, Australia where she was awarded the 2014 Victorian Government Scholarship for Dance.

Throughout her postgraduate years, Shermaine was also funded by various arts organisations such as Creative Victoria, Regional Arts Victoria, Ballarat Regional Multicultural Council to create two works “Breathe, Woman!” (2015) and Things They Said (2016) as part of her arts residencies in Ballarat, Victoria. Her works have since been featured across various platforms such as The Courier, The Ballarat Miner and ABC Radio and News.

After nearly 10 years in Melbourne, Shermaine returned to Singapore to continue her work as an artist and choreographer. She staged a work-in-progress The Intimacy of Corners (2018) as part of the M1 Contact Festival in June. She also heads contemporary dance at Jitterbugs Swingapore, a musical theatre studio under the CSTD Jason Winters Contemporary Dance Syllabus. She has also cohesively worked as an associate choreographer for Singapore Repertory Theatre (The Little Company), for their re-staging of The Nightingale this year.

Shermaine is currently invested in the relationship between performer and viewer, particularly in understanding kinaesthetic empathy, which involves developing empathy through observing the movements of another. She is also playing with text and writing as a choreographic method for dance.

Shermaine is at Rimbun Dahan for three weeks as part of our Choreographers Residency. You can find out more about her works at her website.

Lily Yulianti Farid

Lily Yulianti Farid

Lily Yulianti Farid is a media, communication and gender & development specialist, researcher, trainer and translator with more than 15 years of experience in Indonesia, Japan and Australia. Lily has worked as a communication specialist, writer, radio journalist, producer, presenter, translator and interpreter (English – Indonesian Language). She holds a PhD in Gender studies at the University of Melbourne through an Australian Leadership Award scholarship. She is the founder/director of Makassar International Writers Festival in Indonesia and the co-founder of Indonesia’s first citizen journalism website. Lily has led media and communications training and capacity building workshops for Members of Parliament, government officials, Indonesian journalists, and community organisations, and has extensive experience designing media campaigns and engagement strategies for Indonesian women’s organisations. She is a professional translator and interpreter (Indonesian/English). In 2013 she translated Anita Roddick’s Book, Business as Unusual from English to Indonesia. Roddick is the founder of the Body Shop and a pioneer of social-entrepreneurship. She also produced monologue/play for women and produced Singing Your Poetry Program for youth in Indonesia.

Since 2011, Lily is the founder and director of Makassar International Writers Festival, co-founder and executive director of Rumata’ Artspace Indonesia, executive producer of Makassar South East Asian Film Academy, the producer for INDONATION (2011), Charity Concert in Melbourne in association with Indonesian Students Association, Deakin University.

Lily participated at Ubud Writers and Readers Festival (2008-2013), Singapore Writers Festival (2009), Word Storm Writers Festival Darwin (2010), Byron Bay Writers Festival Australia (2012), Melbourne Writers Festival (2013 and 2017), British Council Edinbrugh Festival (2016), Frankfurt Book Fair (2015), Europhalia Arts Festival (2017), George Town Literary Festival (2014), Indonesian International Book Fair Festival (2017), Winternachten Festival (2009), Pasar Malam Paris (2008).

Lily will be at Rimbun Dahan for one month under our Southeast Asian Arts Residency program. She is working to document and examine narratives and creative works in Malaysia and to interview Malaysian writers, publishers and literary communities during her residency.

Faizal Yunus

Faizal Yunus

Faizal Yunus (b.1989, Malaysia) is a Malaysian based artist who works mainly in printmaking, painting and installation. He graduated in Bachelor of Fine Arts from Mara University of Technology (UiTM) in 2012 majoring in printmaking. Faizal has been drawn towards nature as he grew up in such a surrounding that has helped him nurture his imagination and interpretation of the greenery around him. Autonomy has driven him to believe that an egalitarian society is vital which is where he adapts to the banal practices of everyday life into his abstract print paintings. He draws inspiration from nature, a familiar landscape of lush greenery from where all his imagination had began. He explores alternative print language outside the limitation of printmaking studio by expanding his ideations and limitations through various printmaking techniques and processes.

In his first solo exhibition Matrix, circa 2016 he started looking into his daily life essentials and gathering objects surrounding him for ideas and inspiration as he found limitations in available facilities and easily gathered materials. He felt that by using the objects that so much so associates with a layman’s daily routine, he could create artworks with a heightened sense of desolation in his own narrative. That is how he preempts life to be based on the things that are happening around him. The process of reiterating his thoughts and reflections into his artwork depicts his personality as well as his conviction on the way life looks around him. His solo exhibition – Vortex 2018, revolved around a journey of finding different perspectives and causes of the actions he chooses to make. He believes it is a journey where he unravels the truth where he challenges his capabilities to explore within his reach. Vortex is his poetic statement on the current state of pollution and our role in undoing the beauty of our landscape.

Joining Rimbun Dahan would help me immerse myself in nature. When I’m one with nature, I believe I can uproot my thoughts into my abstract print paintings.

Faizal will be at Rimbun Dahan as a resident artist from mid Oct to end of Nov 2018, via a collaboration with Richard Koh Fine Art. You can check out more of his works at his website.

Melanie Gritzka del Villar

Melanie Gritzka del Villar

Melanie Gritzka del Villar (b. 1982) is a transnational visual artist, born of German-Philippine parents, currently based on Boracay Island in the Philippines. Her practice is shaped by an ongoing exploration of ways in which disparate cultural, geographical and environmental elements can coexist. The artist is particularly concerned with the state of living in an increasingly fragmented and vulnerable world. This translates into a sensibility towards cast away objects, forgotten (hi)stories and overlooked surfaces as poetic portals and holders of latent possibilities for alternative narratives. Gritzka del Villar’s mixed media works are palimpsests traced from a dialogue with the stranded materials and the environments of which they are a product. The materials she uses include driftwood found on the shores of Philippine islands, collage, photography and maps.

This past year the artist has been working intensely with the theme of the Spanish galleon trade of the 16th to 19th century, which marked the birth of globalisation. During her 2-month residency at Rimbun Dahan she wants to expand this project and do research on the Asian spice trade in Pre-European era whilst at the same time looking at current waves of migration in Southeast Asia.

Her projects can be found on her website. You can also follow her works on her Facebook page and Instragam.

Nadhir Nor

Nadhir Nor

Nadhir Nor (b. 1994) is an illustrator based in Sungai Buloh, Selangor. Graduated from The One Academy, Sunway he aspires to dabble in as many media he can try on from a mural commission for Urbanscapes (2016), to designing journals and sketchbooks for Journalife (2017). He is also interested in all things otherworldly. Mythology, ancient cultures and its relationship with modern society are some of the major subjects explored in his works. He believes that there’s something about finding the otherworldly in the mundane and vice versa, and this makes a story worth told. He strives to share as much magical body of work as he can with the world.

Nadhir is our resident artist for August – September 2018. For his stay at Rimbun Dahan, he will be exploring ways to bridge his works back to traditional media. He wants to try to reconnect with the physicality and textures that traditional work has to offer while also exploring world-building fictional folklores in local cultures.

You can follow more of his work at his tumblr and facebook page.

 

Chuah Shu Ruei

Chuah Shu Ruei

Chuah Shu Ruei is an emerging contemporary artist based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Having graduated from ASWARA (National Academy of Arts, Heritage and Culture) in 2013, and also having done apprenticeships with Long Thien Shih and Studio TERUSI (a Malaysian artist collective), her educational exposure to traditional Malaysian heritage strongly informs her practice, which is primarily ephemeral community art installation projects. Her practice also includes mixed media collages that play with perceptual change and interaction with time, space, light and shadow, and an actively engaged/included viewer. The categories of installation and collage work often combine into/overlap each other in her practice, as her overall body of work branches into themes of multi-culturalism, inclusivity, assimilation and validation of the collective mindset, to be further explored  during her Rimbun Dahan residency.

Since 2011, her installation works have been exhibited in Kuala Lumpur, Langkawi and Penang, and most recently in 2017 as part of her solo residencies in Reunion Island (France) and Cebu (Philippines). In Malaysia, her object based artworks have been exhibited in group shows at Core Design Gallery, Hin Bus Art Depot, the 8thInternational Art Expo Malaysia, Pelitahati Gallery, the National Visual Art Gallery, Richard Koh Fine Art,  as well as in group exhibitions in Thailand, Singapore, and most recently Turkey. Her artwork is also part of the art collection featured in ‘Rumah Malaysia’(the Malaysian Embassy) in Beijing.

Shu Ruei is our resident artist for six months and will be exhibiting her work at our gallery in January 2019 along with Wong Xiang Yi. You can find out more about her at her facebook page and her website.

Hings Lim

Hings Lim

Hings Lim (b. 1989, Malaysia) studied Fine Art at the Universiti Malaysia Sarawak, Malaysia. He was awarded the Chair of P. Ramlee from Petronas Award in 2012. He is a multidisciplinary artist based in Kuala Lumpur. Working with a wide range of materials including situations, videos, objects and paintings, Hings is interested in intricating art and life by exploring experiences and relations of reality.

Hings will be at Rimbun Dahan as a resident artist from mid July to end of August 2018, via a collaboration with Richard Koh Fine Art. Through this residency program, Hings wishes to integrate the encounters of things and beings in the surrounding of nature and the everyday life around Rimbun Dahan, while exploring their relations.

 

 

Hwa Wei-An

Hwa Wei-An

Wei-An started dancing because he thought it was cool. He enjoyed watching the dancers in music videos that played on loop in the mornings on ntv7, back when he was supposed to be doing his homework. And so he copied moves from the videos he watched, eventually gained some friends and learned some moves from them, and slowly fanned the little spark of “I want to be cool” into “I want to use my life to dance.”

A graduate of the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts in Singapore, Wei-An’s dance journey has taken him to places like Paris, Shanghai, Hong Kong and around Southeast Asia, performing works by choreographers such as Albert Tiong, Pichet Klunchun, Wu Chien-Wei, Matej Kejzar, Noa Zuk and Ohad Fishof, Ole Khamchanla, Christina Chan, Lee Mun Wai, Gabrielle Nankivell & Luke Smiles, Shahar Binyamini and Sita Ostheimer.

Recently, Wei-An has embarked on the journey of an independent artist, as he seeks to create more and take greater control of his own direction. As he moves forward, he seeks to draw from his interests in the flow state (see the work of Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi), action sports and street dance styles in the development of a personal choreographic methodology. Over the past few months, this has led to the piece entitled Battling Myself and a residency at Dance Nucleus in Singapore during which Wei-An explored the idea of a rhythm section, taken from free-ride mountain-biking.

Wei-An is also the organiser of Paradigm Shift, a contemporary-based dance event held in Singapore that is built as a platform to encourage exchanges between contemporary dancers and dancers of different dance backgrounds.

Wei-An is our resident artist from 9 April 2018 to 6 May 2018. You can follow him on his instagram and found out more on his website.

 

 

“Cut!” choreographed by Hwa Wei-An under Frontier Danceland’s platform Dancers’ Locker

 

“Falling Into Flow”

 

“I Don’t Have Any”

 

Paradigm Shift Trailer

 

Ruby Subramaniam

Ruby Subramaniam

Ruby Subramaniam (b. 1989) is a self-taught Malaysian visual artist.

In 2014, she quit her award-winning career in digital marketing to pursue her passion in arts.  Her experience in corporate communications now allows her to utilize digital marketing and social media as a tool to increase community engagement about art. She works actively with diverse communities to run art-related projects and events, including Art Battle Malaysia. This event gives the audience a chance to participate actively, allowing them to exercise their ability to discuss and appreciate art. With her own artworks, she draws inspiration from traditional Malaysian narratives and culture. She is fascinated by the romanticised idea of ephemeral art.

I believe art is a prayer and it has to dissolve. The sooner it decays, the faster it lifts your burden.”

Because of that, she is never loyal to any one medium, and instead, enjoys the creative process of experimenting with unusual and unexpected artistic formats.

For the past two years, Ruby has worked on huge contemporary kolams (traditional Indian coloured rice art on the floor) installation in public spaces for Publika and RapidKL. “As a traditional art form, how do we revive it using the same method that has been used for centuries? How do we bring it alive again?”

In 2017, using skin as her canvas, her project, This Body is Mine was inspired by the Hindu Goddesses to combat street-harassment and the general Malaysian society’s attempt stigmatise women and police their bodies. As a result of the work, the project was uploaded to social media platforms and consequently went viral and reached more than 2 million views across the world. This project was exhibited in several group shows locally, and internationally in “Be Bold for Change”, Adam&Eve DDB, London as well as a case study in ARTS and SOCIETY (IYGU) by Mémoire de l’Avenir, Paris. More recently, it was presented in UNESCO’s World Humanities Conference in Liege, Belgium in 2017.

During the month of March 2018, her new project, ANTIDOTE in Rimbun Dahan, she invited women to be active participants in her projects, by sharing their relationship with their bodies. Without imposing her ideas and concepts onto her “canvas”, for thirty days, Ruby listened to thirty intimate stories by thirty diverse women and interpreted them with body art.

Please check out her website, facebook and instagram to find out more about the artist.