Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Sticker Lady (Singapore) - Salty wk 4 show & tell

Artist Samantha Lo who previously made stickers of Singapore's "founding father" Lee Kuan Yew as LIMPEH (meaning "your father" in Hokkien -mandarin dialect) pasted subversive stickers on traffic light buttons. Dubbed Sticker Lady, she was arrested and generated interesting dialogue in Singapore about street art.



Police:  "vandalising public property is a very irresponsible act"
Member of parliament: "art per se is not an issue if you get approval"
Appeal judge: while "some might regard graffiti as a stimulating and liberating activity that adds colour, spice and variety to a staid environment", such actions were "offensive to the sensibilities of the general public".

Sparked a public outcry on whether it was art or vandalism.

What could have been a charge for vandalism – which warrants caning and jail time, became a charge for seven counts of mischief. Lo was sentenced to a milder 240 hours of community service as well as a 3 Months Day Reporting Order.

"An art show will only attract a certain amount of people. Even if you put a website up, what makes you so sure people will give a shit about what you are saying?"

She had noticed the limited reach her work achieved and sought for an avenue that will invoke a real and organic response from the masses and not just the selected few.

“I wanted to dig deeper into the issue, how are we affected by everything around us that we’ve become short attention people and having so much information but not knowing what to do with it.” she said.

Given the limitations of street art, Lo was careful and superbly intentional when she designed her stickers. “I used humour, I used Singlish and I used four words. That’s it. And I made it fit into surroundings. I adapted things and made them fit. It had to get people in less than 5 seconds.” she said, explaining why her work’s potency.

With other interviews with the press, she explained that it was her attempt to reclaim spaces for Singaporeans. She expounded on that and said, “I want you to feel like this is home I want you to feel like this is where you belong. I want to use what’s real.”


Commissions for tourism spots run by the government

[ In response to concerns if her exhibit would be deemed too local for tourists, Samantha posed the question, “Why should we compromise and cater to tourists?”
“We’ve been doing that for so many years and that’s why everything looks the same. With all this homogenisation, we’ve lost sense of what it means to be Singaporean.”
“And that’s my desire, to bring our identity back,” she concluded, “This is my way of recognising Singapore”.  ]

Solo exhibition 

Article about the fiasco and her solo exihibition some time on- 

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