Fred Torres Gallery, in collaboration with Galerie Steph, is proud to present a group exhibition of young Singaporean artists exhibiting for the first time in New York. Titled Portrait in Verses, this eclectic exhibition features new works by Fyerool Darma, Hilmi Johandi and SBTG. Together, the artists paint a fragmented portrait of Singapore, the small island city-state in Southeast Asia.
In his practice, Fyerool Darma seeks to reclaim and reassemble the orphaned stories and voices effaced by colonialism and nationalism. Darma’s poetic sepia-toned paintings look back to Singapore’s historical relationship with the Malay Archipelago, and how it was severed with the imposition of colonial powers and foreign ideologies. Stark, alien geometrical structures insert themselves into dreamlike natural landscapes, standing in as metaphors for Singapore’s complicated modernity.
The tensions and conflicts ushered in by the rapid winds of change are subtly depicted in Hilmi Johandi’s multifaceted paintings. After much quiet contemplation, he stitches together peculiar, fragmented images sourced from archival materials. In crafting his
composition, Johandi often mixes disparate spaces, objects and figures together into reconstructed narratives. The juxtaposition of these elements opens the way for an ambiguous but deft re-reading and re-interpretation of post-war Singapore.
Mark Ong and Sue-Anne Lim are the dynamic husband-and-wife duo behind SBTG. Having grown up immersed in the punk subculture of the 80s, their works are an amalgamation of pop cultural influences: from its irreverent imageries and aggressive motifs to its cut-and-paste aesthetics. Their works are a playful celebration of Singapore’s very international cultural environment, from heavy metal music and skateboarding to basketball and the ’92 Dream Team
Great World City; Bangsawan, 160 x 135cm, oil on canvas, 2015.