Today I will be introducing the artists of AiRx 2013!

 

First, we have British artist Philippa Lawrence. (Click here for Bio)

PLawrence2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lawrence has a keen sensibility towards materials and their symbolic resonance, resulting in poetic art objects and installations that comment on universal themes such as man harnessing nature and nature’s beauty versus its fragility.

 

Philippa_Lawrence_1

A Light Death (2002), Swarm (2004) and Bonsai I (2003-2006), Philippa Lawrence

 

Besides these examples, Lawrence is perhaps best known for her site-specific, land-based art. Lawrence explores the connection between people and sites, the relationship often characterized by culture and history.

 

I have a deep interest in ‘place’ – what it is and how the individual may experience it, actually or psychologically and how we respond and relate to site. – Lawrence

 

For example, from 2005-2006, Lawrence travelled to Iceland to work on a project called Sense in Place: Site-ations International, where she responded to the unique heritage and climate of the idyllic island of Videy. The works she created, Fallen Star and Barcode, reflect the Icelanders’ close proximity to natural forces and elements like light and water.

 

Philippa_Lawrence_2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
Fallen Star and Barcode (both 2006), Philippa Lawrence

 

Recently, Lawrence has been developing work that uses the language of textiles in her drive to connect people to nature. Her most prolific piece, Bound, originally made in response to the National Botanic Gardens of Wales in 2003, has been commissioned and recreated several times in different parts of the UK and the US.

 

Darning the Land - Seam

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Darning the Land: Seam (2011)

A double running stitch of 59 flowerbeds, that will mature in 12-18 months, made for the Maurice Lea Memorial Park, Church Gresley, Derbyshire.

 

 

Bound_Old_Denbighshire_2004

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bound, Old Denbighshire (2004) 

 

 

Meadow Arts at Croft Castle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bound, Croft (2009)

 

This parallel between textiles and nature is an interesting angle that could surface in her collaborative work for AiRx 2013. Think about tropical plants, humid weather and the manicured gardens in the Singapore Botanic Gardens, as well as traditional floral patterns in Southeast Asian fabrics like the iconic sarong kebaya worn by air stewardesses of the Singapore Airlines.

 

On the Singapore front, I would like to introduce architect-artist Randy Chan. (Click here for Bio)

Randy Chan

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chan believes that art and architecture stem from the same creative impulse.

 

Chan’s successful career as an architect has seen him work on an array of projects from private and cluster housing, commercial buildings, master-planning to stage design. His best-known architectural achievements include the Singapore Pavilion at the 2005 Aichi World Expo and the stage design for the Youth Olympic Games 2010 in Singapore.

 

My work, like the National Day and Youth Olympics, involves me as an architect, using an architectural eye, as much as me as a cinographer – Chan

 

Singapore Pavilion 2005 Aichi World Expo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Singapore Pavilion, Aichi World Expo (2005)

 

Singapore 2010 Youth Olympic Games

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Singapore Youth Olympic Games (2010)

 

According to Chan’s philosophy, there is no division between architecture and other disciplines of art. His architecture is aesthetically informed, just as much as his art works are architecturally inspired. Chan talks about his transition from architect to architect-artist in this informative interview with the British Council, Singapore:

 

Interview with Randy Chan, 2011

 

No stranger to collaboration, Chan often works with other artists and multi-disciplinary practitioners like himself, to create ambitious, unique art installations. In 2011, Chan worked with artist Grace Tan for Building As A Body, a veil masking the façade of The Substation. The work was commissioned by the Singapore Art Museum and was selected for the President’s Design Award 2012. The piece reminds me of Christo and Jean Claude’s wrapped buildings, but with a structural, formalist edge. Recently, Chan collaborated with artists Zaki Razak, Lee Wen, and Joel Yuen in File Not Found, at Palais de Tokyo, Paris.

 

Building As A Body

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Building As A Body (2011)

 

 

File Not Found 2013

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

File Not Found (2013)

 

 

It would be interesting to see how Chan will lend his experienced architectural eye to the work for AiRx. Will we be expecting a spatial construction, like a veranda, or will we expect to see something more abstract and formalistic?

 

It is evident that Lawrence and Chan both possess extensive cross-disciplinary knowledge and their practices are strongly anchored, though not exclusively, in the UK and Singapore respectively.  The many possible points of convergence in both their practices are underscored by an intrinsic socio-cultural difference that in my opinion will be the most challenging and interesting element of AiRx 2013.

 

To find out more about our artists, head to their individual websites:

http://philippalawrence.com

http://www.zarch.com.sg

 

Image Sources:

  • Philippa Lawrence <http://philippalawrence.com/> [Accessed 3 Sept 2013]
  • Singapore Pavilion at 2005 Aichi World Expo <http://www.pico.com/singapore-pavilion-at-world-expo-2005> [Accessed 3 Sept 2013]
  • Singapore 2010 Youth Olympic Games Facebook <https://fbcdn-sphotos-g-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-prn1/p480x480/44666_428266122707_7541617_n.jpg> [Accessed 3 Sept 2013]
  • Building As A Body. Design Singapore. <https://www.designsingapore.org/pda_public/gallery.aspx?sid=917> [Accessed 4 Sept 2013]
  • File Not Found. Palais de Tokyo. <http://www.palaisdetokyo.com/en/ressources/biography/file-not-found> [Accessed 4 Sept 2013]