Gallery Children’s Biennale will feature ten interactive art showcases produced in collaboration with artists from Singapore and beyond

Date: 20 May to 8 October 2017
Venue: National Gallery Singapore
Price: Ticketed and free activities

Young visitors to the National Gallery Singapore will have their creative imagination ignited with the launch of the first-ever Gallery Children’s Biennale. Starting from 20 May and spanning across more than four months, Gallery Children’s Biennale presents a suite of art installations and activities specially curated for young visitors and parents to embark on a creative journey of exploration and discovery together.

Themed Dreams & Stories, Gallery Children’s Biennale will feature ten interactive installations and new commissioned works by artists from Singapore and beyond: Chng Seok Tin, Mark Justiniani, Yayoi Kusama, Vincent Leow, Lynn Lu, teamLab, Tran Trong Vu, Ian Woo and Robert Zhao. The artworks are located at various public spaces within the Gallery across both the City Hall and Former Supreme Court buildings.

“The Gallery believes that art education plays an important role in developing innovative and expansive thinking in our young. For the Gallery Children’s Biennale, we engaged artists to create works accessible for young visitors to showcase how art can be fun, inspirational and educational. This will be a good platform for families to come together and explore fresh perspectives while engaging with art,” said Ms Chong Siak Ching, CEO, National Gallery Singapore.

“The Gallery Children’s Biennale serves as an excellent opportunity for parents to initiate their young ones into learning about art. Art ignites imaginations, evokes emotions, captures cultural values and expresses aspirations. Gallery Children’s Biennale is premised on the belief that every child is creative – everyone dreams and has stories to tell – and we want to activate their senses, and enable them to express their thinking, ideas and emotions through the universal theme of Dreams & Stories. We are very excited to present the inaugural Gallery Children’s Biennale, and we hope that both the young – and the young at heart – will be inspired by the installations and programmes,” added Ms Suenne Megan Tan, Director, Audience Development & Engagement, National Gallery Singapore.

For a fuller experience, visitors can pick up a Gallery Children’s Biennale Art Pack – which is available at S$5/pack at the Gallery. Produced as a learning resource, the art pack contains activities and ideas for discussion, which are designed to enhance the appreciation and understanding of the art on display, and provide children with the opportunity to reflect and express their own thoughts and creativity.

Adds Ms Tan, “A key aim of the Gallery Children’s Biennale is to incubate, pilot and research new approaches of art engagement, within a museum context, where artists and visitors function as partners and contributors toward a shared learning experience. While this advances the development of art education and the learning of art by an individual, it also transforms museums into active learning environments in which people can feel, think, look and respond, moving comfortably from what they know to new areas of knowledge.”

The Keppel Centre for Art Education is also undergoing a refresh as part of our continuous efforts to inspire new ways of learning. One of the refreshed spaces, Project Gallery, will feature an immersive ocean-themed installation, The Blue Who Swims All This Way by artist Betty Susiarjo. The installation, inspired by the National Collection, invites visitors to explore a myriad of textures, sounds and colours. Visitors will exercise their senses as they hug soft sculptures, climb into giant rocks, listen to the sound of waves and observe a shimmering display of colours.

In conjunction with Gallery Children’s Biennale, there is also a series of public programmes, film screenings, special tours for families, and artist-led workshops for children. Look out for the Civic District Outdoor Festival: When Time Stood Still that is happening on the first two weekends of August (4 – 5 and 11 – 12 Aug 2017).

Civic District Outdoor Festival Giant Rabbits at Padang

Gallery Children’s Biennale is proudly supported by development partner Tote Board. “The Gallery Children’s Biennale is an excellent platform to inspire the imagination of young minds through artistic experiences. The event also encourages intergenerational bonding and strengthen families. Tote Board supports the Gallery Children’s Biennale as a community event for all Singaporeans to enjoy,” said Mr Fong Yong Kian, CEO, Tote Board.

Gallery Children’s Biennale opens to public 20 May to 8 October 2017. For more details, visit Why You Need To Bring Your Child To The First-Ever Gallery Children’s Biennale: Dreams and Stories.

Supreme Court Wing, Level B1, Concourse Gallery 2

Yayoi Kusama (b. 1929. Nagano, Japan) is one of the world’s most influential artists, known for her iconic dots, nets and pumpkin motifs. When she was a young girl, she started seeing the world through a screen of tiny dots. They covered everything she saw – the walls, ceilings, and even her own body. For 40 years, she has created paintings, sculptures, photographs and installations covered in dots. Kusama calls this process ‘obliteration’, which means the complete destruction of every trace of something. She invites you to join in and have fun covering all the furniture and walls in this living room with bright colourful dots!

Childrens Biennale Yayoi Kusama

Supreme Court Wing, Level B1, Outside Concourse Gallery 2

Mark Justiniani (b. 1966. Bacolod, Philippines) is a “magic realist” who uses reflective media to explore space, vision and their changing relationship with time.

Embark on a journey of discovery through Firewalk. The work plays on an illusion of depth, depicting an archaeological site that stretches endlessly into the ground. Objects that could have been once treasured – toys, books, building blocks and letters – can be found within it. As you cross the 16-metre-long bridge, peer into infinity and experience what it feels like to be suspended in space and time.

Firewalk, A Bridge of Embers

City Hall Wing, Level B1, The Ngee Ann Kongsi Concourse Gallery

teamLab is a collective, interdisciplinary creative group that brings together professionals from various fields of practice in the digital society.

Inspired by how the Internet has connected the world, teamLab has created a digital, multi-sensory world where all physical boundaries have been eliminated. Suspended in air, these glowing orbs change colour and produce sounds when touched. This triggers subtle changes in the surrounding orbs. Be enveloped by a mesmerising symphony of sound and light as you navigate this immersive labyrinth.

Homogenizing and Transforming World

Level 1, Padang Atrium

Chng Seok Tin (b. 1946. Singapore) is a leading figure in the Singapore art scene, a Cultural Medallion awardee and an advocate for artists with disabilities.

Being Yourself features a selection of Chng Seok Tin’s artworks, recreated as woodcuts. Each represents a significant moment in her life. The installation invites you to touch and feel the woodcuts, and connect their textures with emotions such as joy, anger, despair, hope and strength.

Being Yourself


27, 28 May & 3, 10, 11 June | Various timings | The Ngee Ann Kongsi Auditorium, Level B1, City Hall Wing

Revolting Rhymes

$12.90 per ticket. Tickets are required for admission for children ages 1 and above and may be purchased at Children ages 12 and below must be accompanied by an adult.
Showcasing seven collections of short films, each carefully curated for a specific age group, this film festival brings children on a magical journey that is sure to enrich and inspire! Catch films like Roald Dahl’s wickedly awesome Revolting Rhymes and the wonderfully empowering Sing, which won the Oscar for Best Live-Action Short Film 2017.

Sat 20 May onwards

The Keppel Centre for Art Education also provides an exciting line-up of programmes for youth, children and families all year round. Keppel Centre will be unveiling a refresh of all its four spaces in October. In conjunction with the Children’s Biennale, one of the refreshed spaces, Project Gallery, will feature an immersive ocean-themed installation, The Blue Who Swims All This Way by artist Betty Susiarjo. The installation, inspired by the National Collection, invites visitors to explore a myriad of textures, sounds and colours. Visitors will exercise their senses as they hug soft sculptures, climb into giant rocks, listen to the sound of waves and observe a shimmering display of colours.

Project Gallery

4 – 5 & 11 – 12 Aug 2017 | National Gallery Singapore, Civic District

An outdoor festival will be organised over two weekends to extend the art experience beyond the walls of the Gallery and into the Civic District precinct, in which the Gallery is situated in. Visit this festival and discover eye-catching outdoor light installations, immersive theatre performances, as well as a slew of interesting F&B pop-ups.

outdoor childrens festival

For more details, visit Children’s Art Events.

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