Month: February 2016

Research Paper Proposal

What is Chinese tomb art? Compare two terracotta figures from the Qin dynasty.



Terracotta army reproduction in one-third scale.




  • Tomb art
    • History
    • Function
      • Afterlife use
      • Religious sacrifice
    • Legacy
      • Time capsule – better insight of ancient China society
  • Tomb sculpture – Qin Shihuangdi tomb
    • Brief description
    • Terracotta warriors – Human victims replaced with pottery substitutes
      • Mass quantities
      • Life size
      • Look unique
  • MAIN POINT: Result of Mass production and standardizing society
    • Kneeling archer & Armored general

tcw-kneeling-archer 2012_TerracottaWarriors_300_08


How were they made


Mechanism of crossbow




  • Difference
    • Unique facial features and body parts
    • Costume
    • Hair bun
    • Body gestures – suggest holding something
      • Crossbow and arrows
        • Position: Archer
        • Interchangeable
      • Bronze sword
        • Position: General


  • Similarity
    • Making process
      • Material – baked clay
      • Heads and 4 limbs created separately
      • Inscription
        • Hierarchy production system
    • Missing weapons mass produced
      • Large quantities
      • Precision
      • Moulding
  • Terracotta warriors reflect Chinese art and culture rely on complex mass production system
  • Protection &Reservation
    • Color
    • Qin Shihuangdi’s Mausoleum




Lethar Ledderose. Ten Thousand Things: Module and Mass Production in Chinese Art (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2000), 51-73.

Jessica Rawson, ed., The British Museum Book of Chinese Art (London: British Museum Press, 1999), 134-149.

“House Model,” Asian Art Museum,  accessed March 11, 2016, http: //





Final Presented works






As a street photographer, I alway like to take a walk on the street and observe interesting scenes. Every one has an unique way of recognising things. An ‘L’ I composed from a building may not be legible to another person. And the most intriguing aspect of the street is the situation is never predictable. For instance, in the letters ‘L’ and ‘E’, a bird and a person emerged simultaneously when I pressed the shutter.






Different compositions and bringing up contrast with black background.





Inspired by the low-shutter speed photography, where the light becomes traceable, I was using a light source as a brush to write my name in Chinese. The line of lights have various widths and weights, depict the essence of Chinese script Calligraphy, which ables to finish one character within one stroke.



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Chinese script calligraphy


Australia written with fire sticks Gawler Ranges South Australia


Slow shutter photography





Chinese calligraphy requires the character to be squarish and structurally balanced.







The intention is to seek the essence of Chinese culture – Food. We Chinese have developed a complicated system and rules about how to eat and what to eat. And even daily greeting also involves ‘food’, like greeting people with ‘have you eaten already?’.



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I have chosen some iconic Chinese food, such as dumplings, bao, youtiao, sesame and century egg, to form strokes and shapes. And red chili represent my own taste as well as Sichuan food.






Living under censorship means only positive information about government is accessible to the public. And media, in China, becomes its mouth and agent, filtering, amending and twisting  what is supposed to be right and true. Using newspaper collage indicates the process of how China media works.






I was inspired by Zhang Dali’s works, showing how China newspaper officials ‘photoshop’ some famous photos back to the 1950s and1960s.




Different choices of font type


Week 4 Reading Workshop – The Brush and the Burin


The Brush and the Burin

Mogul Encounters with European Engravings

Yael Rice, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia


What is her methodology/approach?

The author firstly introduces the origin of albums folios. Then she showcases her studies on five single leaves from Jahangir period albums folios. In each single page, she looks into the arrangements of different terms of arts including calligraphy, engravings and paintings. By doing this, she finds that, being different from paintings, engravings and calligraphies used to be categorized together in that period. In the end, she does some researches on the previous studies and tries to find out the relationship between engravings and calligraphies. Moreover, she suggests the reason on why the two types of art was under the same category.


What is the connection between the arts of calligraphy and painting?

As the author declared, “Scholars of Mogul art have treated the arts of calligraphy and painting as distinct and removed from each other[1]”, it is clear that Calligraphy and paintings serve the context equally and independently.

Because of the Mogul albums’ organizational format, allowing pages alternating between paintings and calligraphy, it is difficult to determine the context according to the precise pagination.

In Islamic arts, Arabic script is considered divine, compared to pictorial form. Rendering human and animal forms posed a challenge to the creative authority of God.[2] What’s more, most of paintings are sourcing from Europe. Hence, scholar believes, Mogul interests in the formal and technical aspects of art-making than about the development or evocation of a broader, overarching narrative.[3]


[1] P308 [2] P308 [3] P309


What is her evidence?

The author substantiates her points with information obtained about the historical context of the Mogul miniatures. One example would be the historical account of the Jesuits appearance in Mogul court (pg. 305), and what items they brought with them. She also provides a technical account of how the artwork was created (pg. 305), and compares the different styles of the Mogul miniatures against each other to further highlight any specific differences between them (page 307). She is also able to provide further insight into the miniatures by conducting a short visual analysis for certain pieces (pg. 307). Examples of European artwork from the Victoria and Albert museum are also given to enhance the reader’s perception of the type of artwork that was being exchanged (pg. 305). She also refers to articles published by other academics that allow her to further support her points, such as the study done in 1926 of the Jahangir album pages by Ernst Kuhnel and Hermann Goetz (pg. 308).

And, what are her sources?

The author uses a variety of textual sources that are derived mainly from books and journal articles, and mentions specific titles for reference for each one.

Project 2 Research

Fort Canning Park



Fort Canning Hill, originally known as Bukit Larangan (or “Forbidden Hill” in Malay) has been a local landmark in the city since Singapore’s earliest recorded history.

The hill once sited the palaces of 14th century Malay Kings and served as the Headquarters of the Far East Command Centre and British Army Barracks. The decision to surrender Singapore to the Japanese on 15 February 1942 was also made on the hill, in the Underground Far East Command Centre, commonly known as Battle Box.

Today, Fort Canning Park is a venue for celebrations. Its expansive, sprawling lawns play host to concerts, theatre productions and festivals



1. Pre colonial era

Extensive Malay and Chinese historical records support the evidence that the royal palace of ancient Malay rulers stood on the summit of this once “Forbidden Hill”.  Five kings of Temasek (“See town, and old name for Singapore) lived here prior to their destruction by invading foreign forces and fled to Melaka.


keramat Tomb

This tomb purportedly contains the remains of the last ruler of pre-colonial Singapore.



14th century artefacts on display reveal evidence of trading with Chinese merchants during that era.



Mural wall

This interesting mural wall, carved out by Balinese artisans, gives an artistic depiction of 14th century events and information pertaining to Singapore’s history.

2. Fort Canning Command Centre


Top of Fort Canning Hill

It included an office building that housed the headquarters, with barracks sited on the other side of the hill.

At the time of completion, the Fort Canning Command Centre was the largest military operations complex in Singapore. It served as the headquarters (HQ) of Malaya Command and had an area of responsibility that covered many regions including Singapore, Malaya, North Borneo and Hong Kong.

Surrender Conference Room

Battle Box

An underground complex



Decision for Surrender

They gathered at the Battle Box on the morning of 15 February to re-assess their ability to withstand the Japanese. Surrender seemed like the only option for Percival and his senior commanders in view of the depleting supply of food, water and ammunition.

On the afternoon of 15 February, Percival and a delegation of senior officers left for the Ford Motor Factory in Bukit Timah, HQ of LG Yamashita. They signed the surrender document that marked the start of the Japanese Occupation in Singapore.


The Japanese took over the Command Centre converting it into the headquarters for Major-General Saburo Kawamura. The underground complex was largely abandoned with the possible exception of the signals room.

End of War

The Indian Army’s 5th Division re-occupied the the Battle Box for the returning Allied forces. Over time, the Battle Box was neglected and forgotten.

On 31 January 1992, the Battle Box was reopened to educate tourists and locals on the events leading to the surrender of Singapore during World War II.

Week 4 Journal : Sri Mariamman Temple, Singapore


It was my first time getting so close to a Hindu temple, to which I have never been before.

It is interesting to know that there are many different ritual discipline to follow in the temple as well as its history where Sir Mariamman temple place a significant role of Hinduism in Singapore. And before this presentation, I had no idea what these intricate statues are on the top of gate. Now I can recognise some and made more sense to me religiously and aesthetically.

Kim Kichul Sound Looking-Rain


Kim Kichul

Kichul Kim denies a typical notion of hearing the sound, and suggests a sound for seeing, which he calls ‘Sound Sculpture’ by molding the stereoscopic nature of sound into a three dimensional presence. The initial works were made in minimal and simplified forms in terms of the installation method and figuration; the pure form meets pure sound without reproduction or modification. For instance, subtle figures combined with sounds of nature or an indistinct note of a bell to reflect waters of the rain, ocean, valley and forest would touch the imagination of the audience. The artist creates a situation for audiences to have synesthetic experiences of both imagining and seeing through unlimited sound filling in the void rather than utterly phrasing a story behind. In his recent works <Sound Drawing> and <Rapport>, Kim invites the audience to make an active interaction of drawing, making sounds and watching movements made by the resonance of their voices.


Sound Looking-Rain


Sound installation

Inspired by the Buddhist concept of emptiness, the artist created a minimalist sound collage that mirrors falling rain with speakers and monofilament. The installation toys with viewers’ ability to be present in the moment, accepting the artificiality before them.


Walking Home 2

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Task 2




A thousand miles away is a photo essay, in which the artist represents us with a collection of photographs implying the intimacy of home. With ambient sounds playing, audience are led to experience different feelings about home with artist together. As a foreigner living in Singapore, the physical home is rather obscure and intangible. It can be represented as a suitcase which is always on the way. Spiritually, home can be established on the relationship, such as family and friends, and the taste of authentic hometown food.




Brief discussion

As playing a very important part in story-telling,  still images sequence provides us a whole framework of the story and allows audience to observe every image in detail, whereas in moving image, audience have to follow the timeline of the video. However,  still images may also make audience confused. Because it will either give too many clues or little hint that could lead to varies of directions. Under some context, because of culture or background difference, sometimes visual is not enough to bring up or recall some emotion. It needs motion or audio to support the visual content. For instance, in my work, I’m using ambient sound as a second narrative form to bridge the cultural gap as well as add a hearing dimension to my work. If you have never heard of how Sichuan dialect sounds or been to a China restaurant, you will experience it when video plays at related images.