Naima Morelli

Tag "geraldine kang"


Geraldine Kang

Earlier we have introduced the work of Singaporean artist and photographer Geraldine Kang. When I first came to Singapore for a month-long immersion of interviews and visits to art spaces, she was the first one among the artists I had planned to speak with. The intuition was good. Alongside allowing me to deepen my knowledge of her work, she also gave a good insight into the working conditions of the younger generation of Singaporean artists, their peculiar outlook and their experience in the art world. Geraldine was also teaching at LaSalle — we indeed meet in the school café — so she gave me a first hint of awareness of the conditions of the still-students, the yet-to-become-artists.

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The work of Geraldine Kang

For Geraldine Kang, art-making has the functions of helping her process her thoughts and feelings and to get herself out of her head. In the awarded series ‘In the Raw’, she depicted her family members in surreal situations dealing with nudity, aging and death. The artist defines In the Raw as a “shock treatment” to introduce her parents to her art practice, which in the beginning they didn’t understand. In an iconic picture of her series, she is in bed with her parents, just like a little child would do, but with a photographic book showing breasts. The photographs encapsulate the lack of intimacy and the difficulty of maturing and dealing with desire where you share the same living space with your family.

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Lovers, friends and family have always been the favourite source of inspiration for artists since the beginning of times. Of course, these involuntary muses are not always happy of being turned into characters of a story, or having their portrait on a gallery wall. This especially if the art deals with intimate, personal and potentially embarrassing themes.

Back in the day the artist could hope the subject matter was unaware of being included in the work. Today though it’s virtually impossible. An image or a review can be infinitely shared on social media. At the same time gallery access is not just for the elites anymore.

I this piece, which has just been published on ArtsHub, I discuss the ethics of including other people’s life in art with artist Geraldine Kang and writer Michele Lee.

Here’s the link to the piece

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