Naima Morelli

Archive
Singapore
A gallery display featuring several small art works hung in a row, which appear to show variations of an image of Christ

My second piece for the Financial Times looks into three independent art spaces in Singapore.

The article is for a special supplement focused on Southeast Asian art, coming out in conjunction with the Singapore Art Week.

Here is the link to the piece

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My series on the behind-the-scenes of arts writers’ lives for Plural Art Mag continues with a conversation with Kim Tay.

Tay is a long-standing founding member and Gallery Director of The Artling, an online gallery, art consulting firm, and web magazine.

Here is the link to the piece

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Finally my piece on the Venice Biennale 2022 has been published by Plural Art Mag. While the piece was written in the aftermath of the opening, it came out just now, given the webmagazine’s editorial schedule.

The article is a report, as well as an overview, and it is focused on the Southeast Asian presence, which this year was much smaller compared to previous years.

Here is the link to the piece

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Podcasts have been my constant companions since their inception, so I was thrilled when artist and journalist. Joana Alarcão interviewed for her “Insight of an Eco Artist” podcast.

In the interview I spoke a ton about researching Southeastasian contemporary art, my writing about art in the MENA region and even a little about my graphic novels, so the interview was divided in two parts.

Here is part 1 of the podcast

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In Southeast Asia, several artists are looking deep into local traditions and narratives, giving the mythical and historical figures obscured by colonialism, patriarchy, and consumerism, their rightful place.

Their works challenge Western-centric and patriarchal narratives, opening up new interpretations for the viewers. Each artist is bringing forth a different yet very relevant narrative.

I wrote about four of my favourite artists from the region working on these themes for CoBo Social, but truly I’m thinking to write an entire book on the subject, or at least curate a show! In the meantime, here is a taste of it.

Here is the link to the piece

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Can machines create value? And do objects have meaning if there are no humans around to experience them?

These are the questions that Singapore artist Gerald Leow has been grappling with in the past few months. If you’re based in Singapore, you might have seen his latest work while walking by Marina Bay Sands. Called Perpetual Motion, it’s a series of column-like sculptures with reflective surfaces that appear to be in constant dialogue with the skyscrapers on the bay.

I have to say that Gerald is one of my favourite Singaporean artists, and I have been following his work since 2015. Plural Art Mag has just published my article on his new exhibit:

Here is the link to the piece

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“Before you start painting, you’re a person in flux, multi-dimensional and colourful. You decide what characteristics you want to embody as a painter prior to entering the studio each day, ” says Ruben Pang from his studio in Sardinia, Italy. 

I have interviewed the artist for Plural Art Mag for his new online solo show at Primo Marella Gallery.

Here is the link to the interview

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The Singapore-based webmagazine Plural Art Mag has just published an interview with artist Justin Lee and Teng Jee Hum, one half of the Teng Collection, together with June Ong.

It was beautiful to learn how their synergies came together to create a one-of-a-kind show at The Private Museum in Singapore.

Here is the link to the piece

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It’s always a privilege to be able to interview cultural figures I have been admiring for a long time. Since my first inception to Singapore, I wowed at the green architecture of the firm WOHA.

Thanks to a virtual show at Gajah Gallery, I have found out WOHA’s founder Richard Hassell is also an art lover and collector. He curated the show Complex Humour highlighting works by I GAK Murniasih and Yunizar.

Both artists present humourous works overlaid with much more difficult themes, as well as tribal elements.

Here is the link to the interview

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The Australian webmagazine Artshub has just published my new piece titled “Why Singapore is the new gateway for the Southeast Asian art scene”

I had a steady collaboration with this amazing platform in the past, which started when I was actually living in Melbourne and carried on throughout the different changes of base.

It was interesting to connect my three years of research on the Singapore contemporary art scene with what I could appreciate last month during the Singapore Art Week.

Of course, my piece is very positive because it’s no mystery that I love Singapore and I have a lot of faith in the way things are developing there.

Here is the link to the article

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How to talk about spiritual matters in a highly secularised, hyper-pragmatic society? This was the question artists exhibiting in the show “Pneuma: Of Spirituality in Contemporary Age” at the Stamford Art Centre in Singapore grappled with during the 2020 Singapore Art Week.

The webmagazine Qantara has just published my piece on the show.

Here is the link to the piece

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I had the privilege to write the curatorial essay for the catalog of Neapolitan artist Sergio Fermariello’s new show “Warriors” opening tomorrow, 7 February, at Richard Koh Fine Art in Singapore. The piece is titled: “Hitting God’s Head with a Hammer Until It Breaks” – a poignant metaphor courtesy of genius Fermariello himself.

As a side note, when I first started working with the art scene in Southeast Asia, back in 2012, I could only hope more and more ties would create between my native Italy and that part of the world.

It has been incredible to see how these exchanges unfolded, and even more beautiful to see Italian artists experiencing the Southeast Asian art world, that has been so open and kind to me.

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