Here's a summary of the various pieces that had captured my attention, in both positive and repulsive manners.
Rape and Pillage (2013)
Embroidery on Thai civil service uniforms
This installation is a commentary on Thailand's turbulent polities.Numerous civil service uniforms were stitched with caricatures of influential Thai personas. The crisp whiteness of the suits, coupled with the headless mannequins, evokes discomfort and a certain ghostliness.
Perhaps a criticism on the destruction of the insects' natural habitats and the resultant devastation to its population numbers.
(The little figures look frail but cute. Each costs 250 sgd.)
Changing Skin (2013)
Porcelain and mixed media
This is an installation of ceramics against a clean, blank wall. Each piece is biomorphic, an assemblage of various body innards and parts into flower-like lumps. Eerie.
Silicone, resin and horse hair
Its title is self-explanatory in an absurdly literal manner. -.-
The olive textures in the central panel, its dreamy density and slow, thoughtful motions, seems like an unfurling field of flowers.
At first glance, his paintings seem bland, with mere silhouettes of floral arrangements. Flat and rather unexciting stretches of blackness.
However, the rich webs of textures reveal themselves when the viewers shift closer to the artwork.
This is the first time I saw embossing as a technique used so dramatically in an artwork. Surprisingly harmonious.
World Mother (2013)
It is mesmerising in its swirls of meticulous red, orange and black. Very beautiful.
It is a very dignified piece.
An office worker stands at the top of the food chain, only that there is nothing to be on top of.
Oil on canvas
He paints people like pieces of meat, with unsentimental strokes and colours.
A few years back, Zeng had a solo exhibition in Singapore, with a wider range of more impressive works.
This tiny portrait is one of his older and more minor paintings.
A crowd of people wrapping around a ball of light. In the darken room, this work seems desperately lonely.
A man stands in front of infinity, looking forward to nothing.
Painting on wood
A molecular structure of disembodied eyes.
Sakshi GuptaStrange Beginnings (2013-2014)
Cast cement, iron sheet and bird feathers
This caught my attention because of the surprising tuft of feathers poking out from a concrete pillar. It's strange.
Interesting combination of wood and water.
Very current. Social commentary on the pursuit of luxurious goods?
Check your eyesight (2006)
Oil on canvas
Very witty! Can you imagine entering into the room and the optician tries to test your eyesight with this board?
You'd probably be saying, "Where you're pointing at now is a housefly. Where you point next will be a housefly too."
Coat made from dead beetles. Smells of preservatives :[
Quantum Void IV (2008)
Not very sure about its title (2013)
Metallic material, machinery
My favorite piece in the entire exhibition hall. The hypnotic opening and closing of a biomorphic flower, as though it is breathing, thumping.
Very calming effect on the audience.
The glow-in-the-dark effect of the rosettes is achieved by the skillful juxtaposition of various clashing colours in close proximity.
Re-interpretation of the Chinese traditional painting styles, with an overlay of burn marks.
Stendhal Mothernature - White
Acrylic on canvas
Mesmerising textures dancing in a musical symphony. How did the artist create it? What reagents did she use?
Entomological specimens and Hammerite paint on canvas
This work of preserved insects is by an artist known for pickling animals to display in museums.
What is the difference between observing dead animals in a natural history museum versus seeing them in an art institution?
Is it moral to order the deaths of these animals? What is morality anyway?
A fusion of limbs and phalluse, all writhing, one morphing into another. Maybe suggesting that men act, react and think with their penises?
Lu ZhengyuanFrom the artist's Chronic series
Three plastic bags carved from black marble... Perhaps the artist is suggesting that all art is rubbish?
*Many Art Stage 2014 works, in trying to capture the attention of a fleeting audience, have chosen to be grotesque. Louder, horrific, more shocking - all to jot the anesthetized masses into feeling again, all to outdo one another. There were twisted limbs, bloodied eyeballs and mash-ups of various body parts, along with all sorts of dead insects. Sigh...
But it's really a challenge for an artwork to be outstanding in a hall with so many other brilliant works. Perhaps the grotesque nature of these artworks reflect the insecurities of their creators?