Photo credit Jet Tone Production

One of cinema’s most beloved auteurs is getting a retrospective at Asian Film Archive in March.

Retrospective: Wong Kar Wai is the latest programme put together by the institution, which will be screening eight of Wong’s films at Oldham Theatre from March to April 2021.

Seven of these films have recently undergone brand-new 4K restorations, which will debut in Singapore under the programme. The list of films are as follows:

As Tears Go By (1988)
Days of Being Wild (1990)
Chungking Express (1994)
Fallen Angels (1995)
Happy Together (1997)
In the Mood for Love (2000)
2046 (2004)
Ashes of Time Redux (2008)

Ashes of Time Redux is a re-edited version of 1994’s Ashes of Time, and will be screened in its existing form since its premiere in 2008.

“The eight films presented as part of this retrospective are an invitation into the charismatic and wistful world of a deeply influential artist,” Asian Film Archive writes.

“Whether tragically romantic, soaked in blood, or quirkily comedic, his distinctive works have enthralled a worldwide audience and inspired countless filmmakers with their bold stylistic strokes and an enduring enigmatic beauty.

Watch the latest episode of Coming Attractions with Asian Film Archive below, where programmers Thong Kay Wee and Viknesh Kobinathan talk about film on Singapore Community Radio.

The 4K restorations first premiered in New York last year at Film at Lincoln Center. With the programme, Wong provided a Director’s Note on the multitude of changes made during the restoration process, which he deems most satisfactory to the original vision for each film.

This includes remixing sound and restoring aspect ratios for Chungking Express and In the Mood for Love, along with creating entirely new credit sequences for all films.

He also mentions that for Happy Together, the tragic drama starring Tony Leung Chiu-wai, portions of his monologues had to be shortened due to original negatives perishing in an accident.

“Since the beginning of this process, these words have reminded me to treat this as an opportunity to present these restorations as a new work from a different vantage point in my career,” he writes. “Having arrived at the end of this process, these words still hold true.” Read the full note here.

The full schedule of screenings will be released on Feb 15, with tickets going on sale Feb 17.

GOFY singapore art trail for art's sake
Photo credit GOFY

Creative community space GOFY is unfurling art history to the masses with a new project, tying together spaces in Singapore with a new arts trail.

The exhibition For Art’s Sake: Shaken & Stirred, running from 5 Feb to 2 May, will encompass several spots in Singapore that run the gamut from F&B hideouts (Moonstone Bar, 8ASH, Common Man Stan), lifestyle joints (The Projector, Palm Ave Float Club, Goodluck Bunch), and nightclub-turned-eateries (Nineteen80, Upstairs).


Participating venue 8ASH, a multi-concept diner in Chinatown.


With a hefty total of 62 art pieces on display, the remarkable project’s aim is two-fold: to open up visual art to a wider audience, and to integrate it into familiar spaces.

“We wish to show people from all walks of life just how much value art can bring to our everyday,” says Tiffany Soh, GOFY’s curator and creative producer.

For Art’s Sake explores the flourishing Southeast Asian identity and its history, featuring pieces by 50 regional artists that reimagine iconic artworks across decades and movements.

The pieces were produced across several mediums: digital illustration, painting, mixed media, and photography.


Singaporean artist Tess Moh pays tribute to our long-serving culture of hawkers by drawing from Grant Wood’s American Gothic, a painting often parodied in Western pop culture.


Indonesian artist Riandy Karuniawan — known for conjuring distinct sci-fi and fantasy landscapes in his work — adds a uniquely psychedelic bent to the abstract art of Piet Mondrian.


Hey Mady!, hailing from the Philippines, remoulds the smoky noir of Edward Hopper’s Nighthawks into the warmness and comfort that a 24/7 lugawan — a non-descript Filipino diner — brings to patrons of all stripes, whether if it’s “a drunk guy passing by to soothe his hangover, a nurse who just ended their night shift, a taxi driver having his late dinner,” as the artist describes.


“Even for those who aren’t usually engaged with the arts, there’s something for everyone to connect with in our exhibition,” Soh explains. “From there, we hope that this would spark their curiosity and kickstart their journey into discovering and embracing more Southeast Asian arts & culture.”

Art prints will be available to purchase at S$300 via the exhibition’s website. Patrons visiting the exhibition at the respective venues will receive an exclusive code that will entitle them to S$50 off each print, with portions of the proceeds going straight to the spaces.

For Art’s Sake: Shaken & Stirred will commence from 5 Feb to 2 May at these venues:

● Common Man Stan (11-12 Stanley Street, Singapore 068730)
● Cure (21 Keong Saik Rd, Singapore 089128)
● Goodluck Bunch (26 Bali Ln, Singapore 189862)
● Grids & Circles (200 South Bridge Rd, Singapore 058749)
● Kream & Kensho (35 Kampong Bahru Rd, Singapore 169355)
● Moonstone Bar (103 Amoy St, Singapore 069923)
● NINETEEN80 (21 Tanjong Pagar Rd, #01-05, Singapore 088444)
● Palm Ave Float Club (66 Kampong Bugis, #05-01, Singapore 338987)
● Sago House (40B Sago St, Singapore 059029)
● The Projector (6001 Beach Rd, #05-00 Golden Mile Tower, Singapore 199589)
● Two Men Bagel House, Holland Village (17D Lor Liput, Singapore 277731)
● Upstairs (66 Boat Quay, Singapore 049854)
● 8ASH (8 Ann Siang Hill, Singapore 069788)

The full list of artists and pieces can be viewed here.

Photo credit Ravi Manthovani

Like most local events happening this year, the annual Singapore Writers Festival is moving online.

Instead of the lack of a physical space impeding their plans, the literary-focused festival will move forward with a wealth of talks, workshops, interactive programmes and Q&As — all conducted online.

In tradition with past editions, the list of esteemed speakers is thrilling: Margaret Atwood, Art Spiegelman, Zadie Smith, Liu Cixin, Naomi Klein, amongst others.

However, taking advantage of the festival’s newly-minted virtual setting, they have taken the admirable leap to experiment with formats. Night Spin 182.7FM is a festival highlight that rethinks our enduring relationship with the radio.

 

Transforming The Arts House into the festival’s radio station, Night Spin 182.7FM is a series of podcasts and vodcasts, including radio plays, artist interviews, insightful dialogues, and segments surrounding literature in Singapore.

The Love Radio segment, hosted by poet Deborah Emmanuel, allows listeners to make love poem dedications to a loved one. Emmanuel will curate & read out a poem especially for them.

On Shades of Self, MAMA MAGNET team up with writer Nyshka Chandran and Ashley Erianah for a series of conversations with notable Singaporean creatives, ranging from rapper Masia One and multi-hyphenate artist Rizman Putra to drag queen icon Becca D’Bus and writer Shivram Gopinath.

Malam Seram reaches back to the age-old tradition of horror storytelling. Abdul Karim Sadali, known to many as DJ KC, brings to life spine-chilling tales adapted from Singaporean short stories.

Access to all Night Spin 182.7FM shows come at $20 and can be purchased here.

To get a sense of the world behind Night Spin 182.7FM, we had a brief chat with The Art House’s programming manager Shridar Mani. Read it below.


What sparked the idea behind Night Spin 182.7FM?

With the festival this year moving to an entirely digital platform and coupled with the theme of intimacy, we tried to think of a way in which these two elements could come together in a cohesive way.

For many of us, the radio has always been a device that very intimately connects us whether it’s through music, listening to an audio documentary on a news station or in conversations with personalities.

We decided then to transform this experience into a digital radio station for SWF that would bring together all these elements of text, music and conversation.

How was it like putting together the various programmes?

We had quite a number of approaches in putting this together.

Some programmes were ideas that the team had about specific content that we thought worked well in this medium but that would also add an edge to the programmes.

For example, radio plays by Edith Podesta and Grace Kalaiselvi that explore the relationship between the female body in mythology and history and its relationship to the contemporary world. Or Deborah Emmanuel’s Love Radio, which plays off the love song dedication idea.

Others were programmes proposed to us by partners whose work we felt with within the radio station concept, such as radio plays adapted from Singlit texts by The Second Breakfast Company and specially curated podcast episodes by well-known podcasters in Singapore, Nicole Lim and DJ KC.

Writing’s On The Wall is a series of interviews with singer-songwriters, and it boasts a diverse range of lyricists! what stood out about their skills to group them for this show?

The selection, made by Aravin Sandran of Neighborhood, was done on the basis of singer-songwriters whose work was recognized for its poetry and lyricism, exploring songwriting as a literary form in and of itself.

The range of shows itself stretches quite far — was there any consideration into the kind of audiences you’re hoping to tune into Night Spin?

​We just wanted to reach out to a wide range of interests so there really is something for everyone — whether you like theatre, music, literary conversations, poetry readings or podcasts. We consciously chose and developed the programmes based on this range.


Singapore Writers Festival 2020 is happening from Oct 30 to Nov 8. More information can be found here.