Friday, 5 December 2014

NUS Baba House | Singapore Art Week 2015

During Singapore Art Week 2015 (17 – 25 January), the NUS Baba House is collaborating with the National Arts Council to offer three site-specific programmes: 

CultureHackSG 1.0 (*Three repeat sessions)
Cost: $10.00
Learn more and register:


This inaugural instalment of CultureHackSG 1.0 explores the idea of hybridity. Inspiration is drawn from two notable instances of hybrid encounters – an early 20th century (c. 1920) setting at NUS Baba House, and contents of recipe books written for European residents in Malaya.
NUS Baba House was previously the home of a Peranakan Chinese family. In the early 20th century, the Peranakan Chinese domestic culture encompassed a rich mix of Chinese, Southeast Asian and European elements. The absorption of ideas and practices from different ethnic origins gave rise to the community’s rich cultural heritage and formed the basis of its distinct identity. European residents in Malaya were introduced to the region’s produce and local culinary traditions. European recipes were adjusted based to available ingredients while adaptations were made to indigenous dishes to suit the Western palette. The variety that has come about from this interaction is manifested in the range of fusion offerings at contemporary dining outlets.

The two instances demonstrate the outcomes from contact and exchange among diverse groups. Using food as a point of entry, this edition of CultureHackSG contemplates the possibilities when ideas are shared and adapted. The first segment of the two-part programme is the creation sessions where culinary and cultural specialists and participants experiment to generate new works. We imagine that the outcomes may take the form of edible concoctions but will only know for sure when the sessions are in progress! Three sharing sessions will form the second part of the programme where participants talk about the process and its outputs.

Heritage Tours

Limited to 13 persons per tour. Recommended for adults and children aged 13 and above.
Learn more and register: 

This one hour heritage tour introduces visitors to the history and architectural features of the House, the Straits Chinese domestic culture and the exhibition at the gallery on the third floor. Guests will experience visiting a Straits Chinese family home in the 1920s on the first and second floors which are furnished with heirlooms from the Wee family (the previous owners of the house) and other donors.

The third floor currently showcases the exhibition Kebon Indah: Mintio & Kabul,Kelompok Batik Tulis Sido Luhur, Collaboration, which runs till 31 January 2015. This exhibition features a series of textiles which combine photographic cyanotype printing with batik techniques. They were the result of a collaboration of two contemporary artists, Samantha Tio (Mintio) and Budi Agung Kuswara (Kabul), and batik makers of the Sido Luhur group from the central Javanese village of Kebon Indah.

Cyanotype Workshops (*Two repeat sessions)

Limited to 16 persons per session. Recommended for adults and children aged 13 and above.
Learn more and register: 
The on-going exhibition at the NUS Baba House, Kebon Indah: Mintio & Kabul, Kelompok Batik Tulis Sido Luhur, Collaboration displays a series of artworks which combines the tradition of batik making with portrait photography. This 2-hour workshop will allow participants to get hands-on exposure in creating a cyanotype print on fabric - one of the methods used by Mintio & Kabul in creating the artworks.

The artists will also talk about the process behind cyanotype, a type of photographic printing that produces a cyan blue print. Discovered in the 1840s, the process was mainly used by architects in the reproduction of large architectural and mechanical drawings. 

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