4D Installation: Library Part 1

  • Title of installation: The Soul Librarian
  • Installation Summary: The library is a land of imagination, but it has dwindled to become something restrictive, boring and even stifling. Thus, in exchange for a bit of your soul, I invite you to play in the library with words and what more. Be a word artist. Write me a poem about Play, and Your Life.
  • Description of Installation: A hand-bound A5 book sits on an easel, accompanied by a box of writing materials (chops, ink, paintbrush, markers, pencils) and an instruction manual. I will either hang this on the easel or place it on a nearby wall. This installation will be located with the “new arrivals”. The poetry book will contain some poems at the start so as to ease the tension between the poet and the book, as if to give the poet green light to vandalise the book.IMAG2129 IMAG2130

4D Project 3: The Library, Part 1

I work as a part-time student assistant at the ADM library, so I am quite familiar with its layout and fixtures. Most people who visit the library for its study tables and printing services. Only a handful use the library for its resources, be it books or the cinema upstairs.

What I find interesting to explore:

  1. That some books sit on the shelves forever, where others are always picked out and thus experience wear and tear. That some books have to be taken special care of. And others, we have restricted access to. It is a society.
  2. The arrangement of every single book pertains to its call number, the immense amount of detail and thus work of a librarian that goes unappreciated by a careless library patron. It’s just a cell in a body.
  3. How the massive windows show a big block of grass instead of a picturesque view whilst books show worlds beyond.  It’s a portal.

*italics = idea for physical representation

Whilst I remain open-minded to more ideas for exploration, I would like to critique my own choices for now. No.2 will probably encounter a problem with the necessity of installing it in the library’s space. It seems like it could be independent from the library itself. No.2 may be too abstract for the viewer to relate to. It also suggests a very time-consuming detailed work that has to be made, although that’s not too much of an issue with me. No.3 is cliche, but it will be attractive and more relatable to the audience so it will naturally be more well-liked.

I’m very new to the idea of making an installation although I have been to several exhibitions featuring very good installations. In this sense, I hope to transfer a bit of my aesthetic habits to feel more comfortable in this new area of work, rather than trying something too ambitious.

Here are some interesting installations I might consider for my work:

3D Hologram installation

I do not think I can make an actual hologram in this stage without being exorbitant, so I might consider making something that suggests the nature of a hologram rather than an actual projection.

And if I did want to make a projection, I found a DIY video on it which I will link below. However, I would need a much larger screen to create this projection . . .

Something interesting: Janet Echelman’s work in Singapore!! 2014

Phoney sheep? That black fur and foreign looking woollen coat. . .

Suggestion of organic tomatoes with contradicting synthetic material

Amazing sculpture of a dinosaur, made with toys.

This is a rather perfect idea for me to capitalise on!!!!!! Subtle, inviting and connected to the space around it. However, this installation is actually a grave??

i love the details though

this took over 156 hours to build! Chandelier by Kevin Champeny

To be honest, I am very interested in quick and clean communication. Although a big composition is very charming to the artist, it does not always charm the viewer. After all, only a person versed in the skills will be able to fully understand the complexity of the required skill set in a work. As I was saying, I hope to communicate my idea more effectively in something very clear in denotation and maybe 30% connotative. Most of my work is highly connotative, and I would like to take a step back and explore something different in this sense.

As for where I would like to explore my work at, it will depend entirely on what I choose to make. I don’t think it is good to limit myself to a location in the early stages of my work. That being said, I can roughly imagine them to interact with the windows (at the book zone of the library) for the ‘portal’, the shelves with their backs to the walls for the ‘portal’ or ‘society’ or ‘cell of a body’, or simply a corner of the library for the ‘portal’ or ‘cell of a body’.


Lum Renee: Singapore Story (Part 2)


As the video is way larger than the maximum upload size again, I would have to complete the entire sequence before uploading it to youtube and subsequently, OSS.


In the meantime, I shall drop in with some excerpts from the sequence to leave an element of surprise in my final presentation!


I am using whiteboard animation and individual illustrations on my phone  for this project. This is to ensure my work is original, expressive and unique in presentation method.

The plot is still focused on my Dad’s childhood! However, as I have decided to do a better quality film, I have reduced the number of stories to 1.

Stay tuned!



Lum Renee’s The Singapore Diary, Task 1

3) Have a conversation with your family member, are there life stories, tradition or experiences about Singapore that you might find?

  •  Account

My Dad used to go “fishing” with his brothers and friends from his kampong district when he was a kid. Even when it’s dark, they would grab their pails and nets, slip out of the house quietly and meet up at some dirty canal or shore, when they know it’s at low-tide. He had many stories about his late night “fishing” adventures, but one of my favourites took place at the cemetery which Grandpa would later be put to rest in.

There was a huge drain or canal in this cemetery, and fishes, shrimps and algae actually thrived in this unusual sanctuary. It was here Dad and his little brother caught an “electric eel” with a gaudy red plastic bag and brought it home to his mom with pride. However, they were both scolded and even punished for their naughtiness, although Grandma cooked up the eel anyway. When I was about 8 or 9, Dad brought me back to this canal to demonstrate how he caught the eel once again, but he slipped into the canal and suffered a cut on his knee. His sturdy nokia phone was also put to rest, thanks to this incident.

Dad built our childhood in such fishing excursions, with other his grown-up brothers and their children. We visited Sembawang Park, Pasir Ris Park and numerous other secret spots in Singapore to hunt for mussels, crabs, fishes . . really, anything we could get our hands on. I recall sitting on a bunch of rocks, trying to cook “mussel soup” using the stone campfire “stove” Dad constructed for me. And wading through muddy ponds at deserted fish farms. Letting bucketfuls of tadpoles nibble at my palms and squishing them to find greenish insides.


Even now, I still missed this way of life. The kampong culture has been replaced with the buzzing city life, where trips to the movie theatres and amusement parks erased the humble and quiet satisfaction that fishing once brought.

  • Approach

I am intending to draw live and record it. I would probably fast forward the video so it has quality drawings with comfortable timing. I would then narrate over the fast-forwarded video. I would likely narrate a couple of stories Dad talked about, and also include some of my thoughts.

Lum Renee: (Part 2) Home, As We Know It

This project was an ambitious one for me.

I always had this need to express the crazy things I’d imagined of, but am more than often held back by fear of judgement. But through a long series of events last December, I realised that this fear was as if I was punishing myself before others could decide if they actually want to punish me (with derogatory comments). That I ought to learn to trust myself and nurture what I personally thought was good. So this time, I went with my instinct.

It was a great hassle to gather what I needed: getting help from a third party, finding safe but cinematic camera angles, good recording devices, proper lighting etc. Then there was the idea of throwing my personal voice out there. To make oneself even more vulnerable. And having to edit and render the video till 3 a.m. since I did not own any adobe softwares.

I think it was worth it.

It may not yet be of the highest quality, but this is the beginning of what’s to come. I want to tap further into my mind and see what else I can do. Improve with time and practice.

But enough about my background story, let’s talk about the video! The title of this casual-style video presentation is “Home: As We Know It”.

I personally enjoy works that harness interactivity between the audience and the artist. Here are the videos that inspired me:

There was something charming about Alexa Chung’s unique style of fashion journalism. She invited the audience to join her on both her thoughts and interactions with her environment. Similarly, I employed the narrative technique and explored my video from a more intimate perspective.

Although this clip seems far-fetched in comparison to my work, I tested out various camera techniques from the awe-inspiring scenes of Great Gatsby, and achieved a few considerably successful cinematic shots.

Overall, I think I can improve in communicating my ideas more coherently , especially in the upcoming projects.

Lum Renee: Museum Visit Thoughts


Lounge Room Tribalism, Graham Fletcher,  2010


Lounge Room Tribalism, Graham Fletcher, 2010






All artworks from this series “Lounge Room Tribailant” are labelled “Untitled”. This series was created by the New Zealand painter and sculptor, Graham Fletcher, in 2010. It served to create a space where one can “consider realities and the effects of colonialism… and how many indigenous artists are [influenced] in the advent of globalism“.

Done entirely in Oil on canvas in a sizeable scale of around 150 x 120 cm to 162 x 130 cm, this series emanates an authoritative atmosphere that once held the “Power of the Old World“, a strange contrast to the lack of authority within the image itself. This authoritative atmosphere is also represented in the chic modernist choice in furniture, where “ownership” has become no longer a privilege for the minority of elites, but aestheticized as “objects of the New“. In other words, the privilege of owning expensive objects has now become so common that it loses its authenticity, its worth, and thus its authority. Similarly, the tribal mask which metaphorized indigenous tribes is now perceived as a simple decorative object (to any person on the globe) rather than a meaningful cultural entity (associated with one group).

Although the artwork is largely successful in manipulating the audience’s emotions towards the work, it is difficult to sieve the commentary on how artistic visions are being globalized from the work alone. Perhaps it is a link that we have to establish ourselves, when thinking about the stripping of cultural identity in the advent of consumer globalism.

My initial read on diminishing importance of culture was quite accurate, although I was very surprised to learn he had applied the earthly colours with “chisel-edged brushes”, as the painting was rather flat. Perhaps this could be THE statement he wishes to make about artists following global culture – to achieve Leonardo Da Vinci’s remarkably thin-layered oil paintings. As for communication challenges of the work . . . I believe he could have made the tribal elements more obvious. Tous les memes, it might not be what he was trying to pull off.


Bloodline of Peace, Suzann Victor, 2015


Bloodline of Peace, Suzann Victor, 2015


Bloodline of Peace, Suzann Victor, 2015




















The stunning massive weave of plastic lenses (about 4m in height!) was initially thought to be a regular elegant artpiece that sought to dazzle and impress. But there was more to that. Upon closer look, I discovered a smear of blood on the centerpiece of each sparkly “fresnel lens” ( a tool Victor first experimented with in 1997). Mixed emotions of disgust and awe set in, invoking memories of peering through the microscope and hateful medical procedures like injections and blood tests. What did this chained curtain (notice the change of vocabulary) of blood mean, and whom did these blood sacrifices come from?

I believed it was “unity” I first saw in this piece (what more to think of multiple plastic slips held together by pins?), but it came apart when I realised the piece comprised of blood “sacrifices”. This emotion, which may or may not be the intention of the artist, pried open my concept of successful teamwork  or simply, happy relationships between people. There must be sacrifice for the bigger picture (e.g. happiness within a body of people) in order to achieve something smooth, beautiful and perfect like the weave. Naturally, upon closer inspection of each relationship, pain must have been involved in each sacrifice, but each sacrifice was essential for the weave to be complete.

The text provided a contextual clue to whom the blood belonged to: people from all walks of life. The armed forces, medicinal community, civil defence, the arts, the pioneer generation – strangers to the artist. And guess what? I was quite right about the sacrifice! Only, it wasn’t exactly for “unity” but rather, “peace”. Well, it comes hand-in-hand, at least. Note that the donors are mainly people who have had to be on the front-line of hardship of , or are going to be, or are being. I took an extra long turn to marvel over the droplets of blood after affirming the good intentions of the artist (you know how some artists go for gore and cruelty and sin). I noted how some people were more generous with their “blood sacrifices” than others. Hahaha.