The Singapore Art Museum is one of Southeast Asia’s leading establishments that specialise in contemporary local art. From now until 18 Oct, it presents a thorough exploration of humankind’s search for paradise. The exhibition, entitled AFTER UTOPIA, investigates the concept both metaphorically and physically, looking at man-made and naturally occurring paradises and the ideologies that claim to help one achieve an enlightened state of mind.
The exhibition unfolds in four chapters, the first of which examines the imagery of the garden as a metaphor – both for an Edenic paradise lost as well as one that has been found, re-imagined and re-imaged as a romanticised 'Other'. The second turns the eye on the structures we inhabit and the way we live, simultaneously reminding us of modern architecture and urban planning's utopian impulse and how these ideals have fallen short when translated into reality. Ideologies that have left an indelible mark on the last century and on which societies and nations have been built are examined in the third chapter. In the final chapter, it asks whether utopia can exist in reality at all.