Issue 7 • Oct - Dec 2008
Beyond the library design at the
National Day Parade
Engaging the Improving lives
community through through Next
arts and heritage Generation Networks
Where Snapshots –
worlds meet events roundup
Community engagement is one of MICA’s key aims. K Bhavani
Arts and heritage activities for the community celebrate Gavin Chelvan
community identity and encourage community bonding.
Community efforts by the National Library Board such Contributors
as “Molly, The Mobile Library” also encourage lifelong Diana Ng
learning in the community. Lim Jia Ying
In this issue, we showcase various initiatives from MICA’s Kenneth Tan
agencies that strive to engage the community in creative ways. Joanna Kang
Lee Hiang Koon
We hope you enjoy reading this issue of Resonance.
Julia Hang (Mrs) Development Authority
Chairperson, Resonance Editorial Board
National Arts Council
National Library Board
Libraries have long-served as a focal point for community learning and socialising in Singapore.
Over the years, the libraries have moved beyond the conﬁnes of their physical location to better
engage the community in innovative ways.
BookCross@SG (BCSG) is a local chapter of a wider global phenomenon of “book-crossing”,
which promotes the joy of reading through the sharing of good books. BCSG is essentially a book
exchange cycle, where books will be left at designated hotspots like selected cafes and SMRT
taxis, for anyone to pick up. Upon completion of reading, the reader will return the book back at
any hotspot for another potential reader to pick it up. Readers are encouraged to log in to the
BookCross website when they pick up one of the BookCross books. This helps track the movement
of the book and allows for readers to share their reviews of the book virtually. This initiative brings
reading out of the library and into the streets of everyday living. It encourages social networking
and learning through shared book reviews.
Molly, the Mobile Library bringing books to the community
Since 3 April 2008, NLB has run a prototype
mobile library service in the form of a bus
called “Molly, the Mobile Library”, to bring the The BookCross@SG programme brings reading out of
library experience to the underserved. This
service aims to encourage them to become All of these stories shared the common theme
active users of public libraries. Institutions of Singaporeans venturing overseas and
and organisations such as children’s homes, immigrants settling into Singapore, a topic
orphanages, special education schools and close to the hearts of Singaporeans.
selected primary schools are some of the
places Molly will visit to promote reading kidsREAD is a nationwide reading programme
and lifelong learning. These groups will to promote the love of reading amongst
have access to over 3,000 customised books young Singaporeans, in particular those from
during each visit, based on the user proﬁle of low-income families. Since 2004, when the
the target audience at the destination. While programme was launched, NLB has partnered
onboard, patrons can perform electronic with community centres, self-help groups and
transactions such as the borrowing of books, the People’s Association, to set up 85 reading
checking of personal loan information and clubs and reach out to 5,000 children from low-
payment of fees and charges via Ez-link. income families with a weekly volunteer-run
In READ! Singapore 2008, NLB’s annual
nationwide reading campaign, one of the many Looking ahead, NLB will continue to come up
initiatives was its very ﬁrst on-board reading with innovative ways to engage more sections
programme with SilkAir, ‘Booklovers on Board’ of the population to cultivate a nationwide love
in June this year. In this unusual programme, for reading and lifelong learning.
travellers were offered a selection of Asian
short stories, to borrow on all SilkAir ﬂights. resonance:00:01
The winning entry from Leong Hin Chee, “No rain can cool down my passion for Singapore!”
CELEBRATING As part of the DesignSingapore – NDP’08
Studio, which serves to create new design
DESIGN intellectual property, three design touchpoints
were produced by 35 Singapore designers and
design students in conjunction with Singapore’s
at the 43rd National Day. They were the Perspectives
Funpack, AIR Glove and the SPARK! Mass
NATIONAL The NDP Perspectives Photography
Competition was also open to the public. The
DAY PARADE competition challenged all photo enthusiasts
to creatively capture their own moments
with the design touchpoints, either during
or outside of the National Day Parade. The
competition deepened the design awareness
of Singaporeans and brought out their creative
streak in the showcasing of their own design
perspectives. The competition drew a total of
269 entries, where there were three eventual
winners and six ﬁnalists.
The 1st prize winner of the competition,
Leong Hin Chee said, “I was very moved by the
strong Singapore spirit at the NDP’08. In my
photograph, the crowd was very excited even in
the gloomy weather.”
Winning works and notable entries were
eventually featured at the NDP Perspectives
Photography Exhibition at the Toa Payoh HDB
Hub from 5 to 21 September 2008.
R ecent survey ﬁndings revealed that Singaporeans are increasingly less
prepared and knowledgeable about dealing with crisis situations. The Youth
Resilience Camp – YoReCa – was devised as a means of raising the level of
awareness and understanding amongst our students about resilience. The
camp gives them a ﬂavour of the critical role of resilience in both manpower
and infrastructure. YoReCa also equips them with practical skills to help
themselves and others in emergency situations.
YoReCa was held at the beautiful resort-like campus of NACLI (the National
Community Leadership Institute) from 17-20 November 2008. Organised
by MICA’s National Resilience Division, 70 students aged 15 to 17 attended,
representing a varied mix of 11 schools.
The camp was jointly funded by MICA and the National Security Coordination
Secretariat. Agencies like the Home Team Academy, Singapore Civil Defence
Force and SMRT were roped in to conduct various courses and tours for
participants during the course of the camp. In addition, NACLI organised
separate activities that helped participants build personal resilience and
To encourage YoReCa participants to be ambassadors of the camp and to share
what they learnt with others, a YoReCa blog and Facebook page were set up.
The participants were provided with laptops for nightly blogging sessions. The
participants were predictably eager to blog, and to connect with each other via
Facebook. Many have continued to maintain their friendships with their camp-
mates through the blog and Facebook group after the camp, sharing pictures
and memories with each other online.
The interaction between students from different schools and backgrounds was
particularly encouraging and essential to the camp experience. By the end
of the camp, goodbyes were an emotional affair, with many sharing words of
gratitude for the new friendships forged.
With the success of YoReCa, there are plans to make the camp an annual event
for youths – eschewing the traditional format of national education and bringing
the important lessons concerning Singapore’s resilience to life.
arts and heritage
A mongst MICA’s key outcomes is a mission to nurture a
gracious people appreciative of arts and culture, along with
a sense of community and identity. Communities and culture
strengthen each other, where communities enrich the vibrancy
of the cultural landscape, whilst culture can provide a socially
inclusive platform for all races, ages and backgrounds to interact.
The National Arts Council (NAC) and National Heritage Board
(NHB) aim to enhance access to culture through an extensive
series of programming which both bring people to visit our
cultural institutions, as well as situate arts and culture in
familiar spaces like their own neighbourhoods, parks and
schools. In FY 2007, NAC organised and supported some 650
outreach activities reaching out to more than 930,000 people.
NAC’s Arts Education Programme in schools has been running
since 1993 and aims to build greater appreciation of various
arts forms from a young age through three main types of
programmes: Exposure, Experience and Excursion. Through
these programmes, students have the opportunity to engage in
the arts through enjoying performances in their school, taking
part in hands-on workshops and attending performances at arts
venues. Annually more than 350,000 students participated in
some 2,000 arts education programmes.
NAC and NHB organise a number of major arts and heritage
festivals, as well as travelling showcases throughout the year,
to encourage wide participation from different segments of
the population. For instance, the Singapore Arts Festival 2008
organised over 580 outreach activities engaging a wide cross-
section of the community and reaching out to 600,000 people.
The festival has always been engaging the public in many
Actively learning more about Singapore’s diverse ethnic
heritage through Community Trails creative ways through new initiatives such as the Arts Where
We Eat programme which brings arts performances to various
hawker centres in the heartlands.The Singapore HeritageFest,
NHB’s signature event, drew a record crowd of 1.6 million
visitors in its 2008 edition. Based on a different theme each year,
the annual festival offers a wide range of programmes from
exhibitions, cultural performances, competitions, heritage bus
tours, new media events and concerts to reach out to different
target audiences. NHB’s Heritage on the Move travelling
exhibitions are another important way to reach out to schools
and the community.
Free outreach programming is offered to make the arts and
cultural experience accessible to everyone, regardless of their
background. The NAC-ExxonMobil Concert in the Park is a
concert held in our public parks which features performances
by established artists. During International Museum excursions and showcases for senior citizens. The
Day, which stretches over three days, entry into all the Community Participation Grant also encourages
public museums is free. The public is also invited to community groups to initiate their own arts activities,
participate in the range of festivities taking place. The to deepen engagement through involvement in the
virtual community is not neglected in the agencies’ creative process and working alongside professional
search to reach out to growing population segments artists.
through online portals like NHB’s Yesterday.sg blog,
which serves as a heritage blog, as well as My Story.sg For NHB, its newly launched Heritage Industry
where the public can contribute their stories. Incentive Programme (HI2P), is an initiative to catalyse
the growth of the heritage eco-system with a funding
Encouraging greater community access and of S$8 million over the next ﬁve years. Through the
participation in arts and culture can provide a valuable programme, HI2P aims to spur the development of
medium for different segments of the community to new and innovative heritage and museum products,
interact and develop a sense of community identity. and work with private players to showcase Singapore’s
NHB’s Community Heritage Trails have been heritage assets both locally and abroad. When the
developed through a ground-up approach. They are programme was piloted from April 2007 to March
organised in partnership with major stakeholders 2008, it supported 10 heritage projects, including the
such as schools and Community Development production of Peranakan children’s books by local
Councils (CDCs) to help encourage greater writer Adeline Foo. The books were well received
community understanding and celebration of their by the media and Singaporeans with a total of 1,225
neighbourhood’s heritage. These trails such as the copies sold within three months.
Bukit Timah Trail and Queenstown Community Trail
are community-led, serving as a platform to galvanise With these initiatives and more, NAC and NHB intend to
and bond the community. continue their efforts to better engage the community
more broadly and deeply in arts and culture through
NAC also works in partnership with corporations, innovative programming and activities.
hospitals, tertiary institutions and community
organisations to bring arts to various community
groups. One major initiative is the District Arts Festival
organised by the CDCs and supported by NAC and the
People’s Association. The festivals are community-
based and held throughout the year in Singapore’s ﬁve
districts to enhance community engagement through
the arts. These festivals provide an opportunity to
showcase community talents and encourage creative
expression. NAC also provides a Presentation and
Promotion Grant to support community based cultural
organisations such as the Leng Kee Dance Group,
to facilitate the growth and development of such
community initiated groups.
The NAC-ExxonMobil Concert in the Park
NAC intends to engage the community more
deeply through targeted programmes for different
population segments with its Arts For All Community
Engagement Plan. This plan is one of the key
initiatives under MICA’s Renaissance City Plan 3 arts
and culture masterplan, and aims to reach out to
those who have no ready access to the arts. Arts For
All will include a series of new outreach initiatives
such as the Silver Arts Programme. The Silver Arts
Programme is based on the philosophy that by
participating in meaningful creative activities, senior
citizens can keep themselves mentally and physically
active, thus enhancing their health and general well-
being. The comprehensive programme will include The Singapore HeritageFest remains a crowd-puller,
the formation of arts interest groups, workshops, drawing an increasing number of visitors each year
where S et against the backdrop of an evolving
landscape, our city comes to life in a newly
minted video from MICA, showcasing
worlds the people and places of Singapore, and
articulating the Spirit of Singapore. ‘Where
Worlds Meet’ is a new video produced to
showcase Singapore to the international
community of investors, talents and
visitors. Inspired by our heritage and driven
by the aspiration to progress, the video
depicts Singapore’s constant reinvention.
Through the keen eyes of little Amelia, a
5-year-old girl who is visiting Singapore,
the video follows her adventures as
she explores and imbibes the multi-
faceted sights and sounds of Singapore,
making friends along the way. Amelia
eventually meets her doppelganger in this
cosmopolitan city, reinforcing Singapore’s
status as a global hub where worlds meet.
The LASALLE College of the Arts
In the video, heritage sites are juxtaposed against modern skyscrapers where
iconic buildings like the refurbished National Museum of Singapore become
the embodiment of the city that values traditions yet embraces change. To top
it off, the newly completed Changi Airport Terminal 3 and upcoming Marina
Bay Sands Integrated Resorts bear testament to our changing landscape and
In the city where opportunities abound, Singapore provides an environment
conducive for growth. The striking architecture of LASALLE College of the Arts
takes centrestage in the video as one of the many institutions that nurture the
future stakeholders of our country. Luscious shots of our expansive greenery
bring home the point that in Singapore, growth is in season all year round.
Through constant exchanges and collaboration, bright sparks emerge in various
ways in this cosmopolitan nation. Foreigners feel welcome here and ﬁnd their
‘home away from home’.
‘Where Worlds Meet’ is available in three versions - 1 min, 2 min and 3 min
50 sec, to cater to your various needs for screenings at major international
conferences or visiting delegations, as a short introduction to Singapore.
For further enquiries, please email email@example.com.
“My Garden” by DesignSingapore Scholars
Wins London’s Evening Standard Award
S ingapore designs received recognition from the London The changing imagery, paper sculpture and technology
community with its ﬁrst prize win in the “Independent or enhance the overall display content by revealing added
Speciality Store: 1 – 5 outlets” category of the Evening dimensions to the presentation.
Standard Window Display Award 2008 in September.
Being part of the high-proﬁle project has helped the
My Garden is a collaborative work by two DesignSingapore scholars develop their capabilities
DesignSingapore scholars, architectural designer and professional networks, showcase their talents and
Melisa Chan and graphic designer David Lee, together gain exposure in their respective ﬁeld of expertise. This
with established London-based fashion designer Ashley win has also placed Singapore design alongside other
Isham. My Garden cuts across the disciplines of graphic category winners which include established multi-store
design, interior design, fashion, art and technology, chain Oasis and Selfridges, the largest department store
combining them in a unique showcase. on Oxford Street, known for some of London’s most
imaginative window displays.
This winning Singapore presentation was showcased
during the London Design Festival 2008 and London My Garden is supported by the DesignSingapore Council
Fashion Week 2008, in the store-front window display of MICA, as part of its efforts to raise the creative design
of multi-brand boutique Aquaint, which stocks Isham’s capability of Singapore designers. The retail context of the
designs. Folding techniques found in the art of origami presentation lends the project high visibility and elevates
were used to create a textured sculptural landscape of the proﬁle of Singapore design. Through this effort,
large lotus ﬂowers representing a garden. Combined with DesignSingapore Council seeks to increase the mindshare
breakthrough usage of electro-luminescent technology, of Singapore as a city of design excellence among the
to illuminate the display, the ﬁnished product is presented international audience who attended both events.
in a way that is startling, surprising, yet elegant.
The award-winning window display of My Garden within the shopping mecca of Conduit Street in London
Improving Lives Through
Next Generation Networks
Communication networks have become key social and economic infrastructure in many countries, including that of
Singapore. Acknowledging this, the Singapore Government has begun developing a Next Generation National Broadband
Network, or Next Gen NBN, to ensure that Singapore will be able to join cities such as Paris, Tokyo, Seoul and Hong
Kong, at the forefront of broadband development.
With the award of the ﬁrst phase of the Next Gen NBN project, the Next Gen NBN Network Company (“NetCo”), to the
OpenNet Consortium on 26 September 2008, and the impending award of the second phase, the Operating Company
(“OpCo”), by the ﬁrst quarter of 2009, users can expect to enjoy high-speed access to next generation applications
and services by 2012. Besides the economic beneﬁts which the Next Gen NBN is expected to bring, there will also be
improvements in the areas of education, healthcare and business. This will transform the way we live and work.
Increasingly, education involves distance learning. This In the area of business, high-deﬁnition video conferencing
includes areas such as Internet-based research, online has been heavily touted as one of the next generation
collaboration with fellow students and video conferences applications which many organisations would be able to
with professors. High quality video, enabled by a bigger leverage on. Individuals are also likely to enjoy greater
broadband “pipe” can also provide a more intimate and efﬁciencies in terms of information sharing and data
interactive two-way experience. For example, students transfer. This would be especially useful in industries
can take “virtual field trips” in the comfort of their such as video editing, game development, engineering
homes and obtain information about the things they and scientiﬁc sample analysis where large data ﬁles are
encounter immediately through the Internet, by using shared. This removes the need for bulky hard disks to be
the same computer. transported. Companies can also support telecommuting,
increasing ﬂexibility for workers who have to juggle both
In healthcare, next generation networks will allow for work and family commitments.
the use of haptic feedback devices in medical procedures
that can add a sense of touch or “feel” for long distance At the award of the Next Gen NBN NetCo, Minister Lee
treatments. Known also as “telehealth”, expert surgeons Boon Yang said “Singaporeans can look forward to the
would then be able to work from a central workstation, ABC of Next Gen NBN: Attractive prices for ultra-high-
performing operations in various remote locations through speed broadband; Beneﬁts from innovative services;
machines set up by local nursing staff. Doctors can thus Coverage nationwide with minimal disruption during
be available when and where the need is most critical. fast roll-out,” which emphasises the Government’s
This could potentially result in treatments delivered commitment in ensuring that all Singaporeans can beneﬁt
more promptly and at a lower cost. Patients with serious from the Next Gen NBN. The Next Gen NBN, when rolled
medical conditions can also be “wired” with sensors and out, will impact our lives in many ways.
monitors that transmit data to caregivers, family, or
Behind Street Names: Prominent Neither East Nor West: Asians in Monochrome
People of Early Singapore 23 October 2008 – 1 February 2009
25 October 2008 – 15 March 2009
This exhibition features portraits from the Lafayette collection, including those of Asian
In early Singapore, the Municipal dignitaries who played a signiﬁcant role in bridging the gap between the East and
Councillors or Commissioners were West, and Europeans who were relevant to the development of Asia. The spirit of this
in charge of naming streets. Streets exhibition reinforces the idea that differences in race, religion, culture and geography
were named in several ways, the are of no consequence when individuals of different backgrounds come together
most common being after people or peacefully. The exhibition is on at the Asian Civilisations Museum.
places, such as Alkaff Avenue and
Eu Tong Sen Street. Behind each
street name is a story – about how
the street got its name or the person
it was named after.
This exhibition will explain the
reason for the name behind each
street, touching on the lives and President’s Design Award 2008
achievements of the people who Public Exhibition
had played a vital part in making
3 December 2008 - 28 February 2009
Singapore what it is today. The
exhibition is on at the Lee Kong The President’s Design Award
Chian Reference Library at the is Singapore’s most prestigious
National Library Building. award for its designers and
designs, recognising the signiﬁcant
Admission is free. achievements and contributions
of the nation’s design talents. This
year, three designers and seven
designs were recognised at the award
ceremony on 1 December 2008.
The President’s Design Award 2008
Public Exhibition will feature the
A Cow and Bull Story 10 recipients at the URA Gallery from
19 January 2009 – August 2009 3 December 2008 to 28 February 2009.
This exhibition at the Singapore
Philatelic Museum is held in
conjunction with the zodiac year
Here’s a sneak preview of the
line-up of exciting events that
of the ox. Visitors can ﬁnd out why
the ox is the second animal in the MICA has in store for 2009.
Chinese zodiac and the traits of
those born under this zodiac sign.
Interesting facts about the ox will
be explored, such as the strength
and feats of the animal which has
been indispensable to mankind since
Come-in: Interior Design as a Contemporary Art Medium in Germany
22 January 2009 - 12 April 2009
What differentiates art from design? An international touring exhibition developed by the Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen (IFA),
Stuttgart, Germany, and presented in co-operation with the Goethe-Institut Singapore, Come-in examines the unique relationship
between contemporary art and design.
Witness how renowned artists approach the designing of furniture, textiles, ceramics and interior architecture from a
contemporary art perspective, and learn how their ideas and inspirations are interpreted through drawings, installations,
sculptures, models, photography and video. Come and be inspired by the works of contributing artists as they push the
envelope of contemporary art and design. This exhibition will take place at the National Museum of Singapore.
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