Art Encounters: Rizman Putra

Updated: Feb 13


From Gelam to Glam is a black-light drawing installation that reflects the eclectic blend of history and culture in the Kampong Glam district. Presented by multi-disciplinary artist Rizman Putra, who has incorporated visual arts, performance and music in his artistic oeuvre for over a decade, the installation is a continuation of the artist’s long-term interest in line and mark-making, as seen in his sketchbooks and past works on display.


For Art Encounters, Rizman expands on his exploration of drawing in three dimensions by incorporating a new medium of UV paint to create a vibrant installation inspired by the native Gelam tree, or Paperbark tree, which gave the Kampong Glam precinct its name in the 1820s. Commonly found in this area in the past, the tree has a distinct peeling bark and elongated leaves with parallel striations and was used for boat-making and medicine.


In conjunction with the special exhibition at the Malay Heritage Centre, Seekor Singa, Seorang Putera dan Sebingkai Cermin: Reflecting and Refracting Singapura, which explores Singapore’s historical significance in the maritime world of the 15th to 19th century, Rizman also interpolates material culture and ephemera from the exhibition into the installation.


Drawing on these diverse sources, Rizman’s work pays homage to both the historic roots of the precinct as a thriving port town and enclave for Malay and Arab communities, as well as its cultural life today as a colourful melting pot of restaurants and lifestyle shops. The installation will begin to glow as night falls, echoing Kampong Glam’s daily transition from heritage site by day to culture hotspot by night.


Special dates:

15–23 Feb | Daily except 17 Feb | 10am—6pm

Gain rare insight into the art-making process as Rizman creates his artwork live.


28 Feb—7 Jun | Fridays to Sundays except public holidays | 10am—6pm

Step inside Rizman’s immersive environment and view his elaborate drawings up close.


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About Rizman Putra

Rizman Putra graduated with Master of Arts (Fine Arts) from Lasalle College of the Arts in 2007. He is the winner of the 2005 Japanese Chamber of Commerce & Industry Singapore Foundation Arts Award, a co-founder of the now dissolved art collective Kill Your Television, as well as the founder of the electronic outfit NADA. Rizman has performed and exhibited his works in Australia, Germany, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Korea, USA, Taiwan, United Kingdom and Brazil. He was one of the four artists selected for the 2005 President’s Young Talents Exhibition and was also included in the 2005 Fukuoka Triennale. In 2003, he received the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology's (RMIT) Most Outstanding Award. He is currently an Associate Artist with Cake Theatrical Productions.

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