參展藝術家｜張慧芳(CHANG Hui Fang)、劉威延(Urich LAU) 、 姚詩韻(YEO Shih Yun)
展期｜2019.06.15 - 2019.06.23(週日、一公休)
“The human spirit must prevail over technology.”― Albert Einstein
Proto- 指的是初始，-Polis指的則是一座理想希臘古城；藝術家們思考展出概念時，索性將此兩個詞拼接起來，將google translate 上面英文直翻中文顯示的文字- 原城 (Protopolis) ，當作本次展覽一個中性的、三位藝術家對於現代科技不同角度和觀察的主題。
劉威延(Urich LAU) 作品回應現代都市景觀的拆除和重建，挪用德國導演華特．魯特曼1972年實驗性影片: 柏林: 城市交響曲，他捕捉新加坡和其他亞洲國家城市中公共區域的建築施工場景，每一章都由新加坡憲法裡找到的人民基礎自主權條例做為開頭，反映身為一位藝術家發表作品的自由權，並利用現在科技帶來的相片生成轉化器再建構一系列城市幻象圖集。
科技給人一種由不知到知的能量，而這種能量，正是讓使用者和發明者能獲得成就感和新鮮感的主要來源。人們被引誘，將這種 “好似能知道更多知識”的科技當作追求生命本源的手段，投入宗教狂熱般的激情。張慧芳(CHANG Hui Fang) 挪用十五至十七世紀的宗教藝術作品，針對現代人們的內心深植的信念進行反思。
姚詩韻(YEO Shih Yun) 則是因為手機如何成為與逝世母親之間的聯繫產生的創作靈感，此項幾乎每個人都擁有、並且貼身的科技產品，藉著每日幫這支手機充電的行為，成為藝術家最靠近她母親的時刻。
Proto- refers to the beginning, -Polis refers to an ideal ancient Greek city or to the archetypal city; Protopolis is an exhibition by three Singapore-based artists with different perspectives and observations on modern technology.
Urich Lau’s Converse Construct: After Walther Ruttmann – Version 3.0.1 is created in response to a constant state of demolition and construction in today’s urban landscapes. Appropriating the 1927 film Berlin: Symphony of a Great City by the German experimental film director Walther Ruttmann that looked at the city of a modernised Berlin from morning to night. The video work is structured as ‘chapters’ with scenes of urban construction shot in Singapore with some parts from other Asian cities. Each chapter opens with a line from the article on the Fundamental Liberties found in the Constitution of Singapore to reflect on the basic freedom and the will of expression working as an artist. To establish any form of cultural memory in the city with relentless construction and destruction of spaces and buildings, the artist would appear at the end of each chapter as a ‘ghost’ struggling to emerge from the rubble. The video is adapted to a new version of sequential photographs that are manipulated by an imaging generated algorithm into urban illusions.
Chang Hui Fang’s Faith series: Technology places people in an enlightening realm; this gives end-users and inventors a sense of accomplishment and freshness. People are seduced to use technology to gain knowledge as well as pursue the meaning of life. However, technology brings a short-lived happiness; the human dilemma remains unresolved. Despite the prevalence of social media, loneliness prevails. Technology is not evil, humans sinful nature and motivations are.
These paintings use a composition of charcoal powder in water, the overlapping of various shades of colour and charcoal strokes to depict creatures in the sky. The use of brilliant gold leaf is also deliberately reminiscent of the image of classical art. In its ‘re-construction’ of the work on which it appropriates, each painting adds a layer of meaning to its original message. It is up to the viewer to make out the identity of the figures in each painting—a parallel to how we may subjectively define our ‘faith’.
Yeo Shih Yun’s Our conversations: Ode to my mother series: These artworks are inspired by the passing of artist’s mother in November 2018. After her mother left behind among many items, was her mobile phone. The mobile phone is such a close belonging to everyone of us in today’s society, our life is inside the phone. This is the closest thing that the artist has of her mother...of her presence.... The artist kept the phone ‘alive’ by charging it everyday. In this series of works, an mobile phone case becomes the canvas for the artist and marks created by toy robots are silk-screened on the panel supporting the mobile phone cases.