Art in the Commons: Data Visualising Jurong

The Chinese Garden, located in Jurong Lake Gardens, has been closed for redevelopment since 2019. While most of it is surrounded by scaffolding, it is still possible to see some of its architectural features. Today, the Garden can only be experienced in fragments: viewed only from a distance, in photographs, and in memories, with all their gaps and imperfections.

a shapeless mass; a network of times takes a look at this iconic site of Jurong in its inaccessible state and examines how it exists in people’s memories. The installation is a machine-knitted “diagram” derived from the artist’s analysis of memories about the Chinese Garden which have been contributed by members of the public. These responses ranged from the detailed and heartfelt, to the brief, vague, and even inaccurate. The title is a reference to how these responses evolve from a shapeless mass of collected data into a textured network of collective memories which, for all their differences, describe a common space. This presentation by artist Berny Tan is the second cycle of Art in the Commons: Data Visualising Jurong, and is part of SAM’s collaboration with Science Centre Singapore to embark on community-based art programmes within the Jurong district.

Supported by:

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Venue partner:

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about the artist

Berny Tan (b. 1990, Singapore) is an artist, curator, and writer based in Singapore. Her interdisciplinary practice explores the tensions that arise when she applies systems to—and unearths systems in—her personal experiences, complicating the false binary between rational and emotional. Her strategies also reflect a fundamental interest in language as it is read, written, and spoken by her. Tan holds an MA (Dist) in Contemporary Art Theory from Goldsmiths, University of London, and a BFA (Hons) in Visual and Critical Studies from the School of Visual Arts.