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Undescribed #5

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Undescribed is an annual platform for emerging artists to present new ways of approaching photography and the moving image within the field of art today. The exhibition presents works that challenge and rethink current image-making practices. Undescribed aptly labels the “unknown” stage of these emerging creators, a period of potential and experimentation, both for their individual practices as well as their explorations into the medium of photography.

This year’s selection is made by visual artist Geraldine Kang, and director of DECK, Gwen Lee. The artists selected are Chong Lii, Dave Lim, Elizabeth Gabrielle LeePauline Schwenck & Jonathan Tan, Sean Cham and Sarah Tan.

The Artists

Chong Lii (b. 1994) is a Singaporean artist whose work aims to explore the possibility of merging or levelling disparate spaces, objects, people, and images. Singaporean millennial fantasies, accidental occult tributes in digital media and imagined historical subcultures are among the subjects he investigates. Operating alongside strategies of complicity and dissent, Chong’s installations and films simultaneously examine and revel within the apparatus of the moving image. Chong received his B.A. from the Gerrit Rietveld Academie (Amsterdam, NL). His work has appeared internationally in the VIVO Media Arts Centre, Singapore Art Museum, EYE Filmmuseum, Stedelijk Museum, amongst others. Chong is a designer for Mynah Magazine, an independent annual print magazine dedicated to exploring both contemporary and historical Singaporean culture. 

Dave Lim (b. 1994) is concerned with all kinds of temporary landscapes. Concerned with the state of visuals, he is concerned about the humour and relief that photography and visuals bring to us; and consistently uses that as an entry point into his work. Coming from a photojournalistic and research background, most of the work reflects greater conceptual concerns with regards to urban development and the position of the human body in the change in our living environments. He graduated with a B.A(Hons) in Urban Studies from Yale-NUS, Singapore. His work has been shown locally and regionally, winning multiple prizes at competitions such as the NTU Global Digital Art Prize and the Objectifs Documentary Award. 

Elizabeth Gabrielle Lee (b. 1994) is an artist based between London and Singapore. Her work navigates the nuances and intricacies that arise out of history and memory. Meditating on fractured and lost traditions, themes of displacement and nostalgia weave in and out of her storytelling. Through visual and textual interventions, she attempts to undo constructs of knowledge production and retention. By negotiating the dynamic of the ‘near’ and ‘elsewhere’, her practice works to remap a singular history, steering narratives toward alternate and fluid territories.

Pauline Schwenck & Jonathan Tan are collaborators on the series Rhizome, which explores the notion of sexuality as a societal taboo in Singapore. Pauline Schwenck (b. 1997) was born and raised in Rettel, France, and currently based in Paris. She holds a BA in Social Sciences from Sciences Po Paris, and is currently pursuing her MA in Marketing. Intrigued by her daily encounters, Pauline seeks to capture and translate them into visual poetry. Jonathan Tan (b. 1994) is a photographer based in Singapore. Keenly aware of urban ennui and malaise, his works often reflect themes of both solitude and intimacy, and seeks the subtle beauty in the everyday.  

Sarah Tan (b. 1995) is an artist whose work contemplates personal encounters of loss, memory and fleeting moments. Working across still and moving image, she is particularly interested in the ontology of the photographic medium and its parallels with time and distance. Driven by a longing to possess what is always beyond reach, Sarah’s practice is an unconscious search for answers to questions that may offer no concrete resolution. She graduated from the London College of Communication in 2019 and holds a BA First Class Honours Degree in Photography.

Sean Cham (b. 1994) is a Singaporean artist currently based in London. He works at the intersections of visual art, performance, and situated practice. Sean is concerned with the contradictions and conflicts that arise from urban development, as well as collective memory and historiography. His work comprises archival research, architectural and ethnographic studies, and archaeological digs. Cham’s works have been exhibited in Ethiopia, Germany, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, and Sweden. His works had been commissioned by M1 Singapore Fringe Festival, The Future of Our Pasts Festival, and NUS Centre For the Arts. Sean is also a published author and finalist for several photographic awards. He is currently pursuing his MA in Situated Practice at Bartlett School of Architecture, University College London.

Presented by DECK

Exhibition Printing sponsored by AVS

Opening Night:
13 February 2020, 7pm

Artist Talk:
Saturday 7 Mar 2020, 2pm – 4pm

Exhibition Days:
13 February to 15 March 2020

Image credits:
– Exhibition Banner;
– Chong Lii, Beyond A Chamber That Externalises All The Time, or Séance, 2019;
– Dave Lim, Complicity: Eroding the City, 2019;
– Elizabeth Gabrielle Lee, The Unsusual Powers of Disposing, 2019—Ongoing;
– Jonathan Tan & Pauline Schwenck, Rhizome, 2018;
– Sarah Tan, Alaga, 2020-ongoing;
– Sean Cham, Plot of Land, 2019-ongoing.

Event Information

13 February 2020 –
15 March 2020
DECK Gallery 1 & 2
120A Prinsep Street
Singapore, 187937 Singapore
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