A Perspective of Human Indulgence @ Singapore Art Museum


Have you ever stood in a dark quiet space in the midst of a crowd who are engrossed with indulging themselves in their favourite foods?


The dark space allows our senses to tune into the crowd’s gestures and the audible soft rumbling sounds of low murmurings, chewing and swallowing.

Unsubtitled (2013)
Finalist Artist: Nguyen Trinh Thi, Vietnam
Description: A concept using video projection on life sized wood cut-outs, the artist scrutinize on the cultural scene of her home country as she picked 19 individuals of her countrymen from all walks of life to display the act of eating their favourite food in front of the camera. Despite the individualistic differences in character, preference and manner of indulgence; the act of eating remains universal.


It is a deep, dark and mysterious performance emphasizing the struggles of a supine artist, Owen Leong being gagged with a harsh-looking dental retractor just to keep his mouth forcibly open as he positioned himself beneath a dripping sculptured heart soaked in white liquid.


Over time, the discomfort becomes apparent as we witnessed the artist compelled expression to ingest the white liquid that splatters into and around his mouth and face. The distress intensified as we watched and listened to his responses from the self inflicting physical coercion.

Infinite Love (2011)
Finalist Artist: Owen Leong, Australia
Description: Known for his film, photography and sculptural works, the artist implicatively explores the indulgence of human race on the assumptions of race, ethnicity and gender and how these social-define notions affect claims to cultural belongings and national identities.


Learning about the deceptive survival game humans played on animals of the wild for centuries is an eye-opener. The artist, Robert Zhao RenHui reveals a poignant showcase of a knife coated with frozen blood protruding out of the snow surface.


Deceptive in nature, it is a killing tool/trap used by the Eskimos to lure wolves to their death. With the knife’s blade coated in frozen blood, the bloody scent draws any approaching wolf. The wolf will begin cautiously by sniffing and licking at the frozen blood. As the wolf deemed the item as safe, it will lick further and more aggressively until the blade of the knife is exposed. As it continues, it will not realize that its tongue is being cut due to the numbing effect from the earlier frozen blood. Unaware of the situation, the wolf is lulled to assume the prospect of fresh, warm blood and it will instinctively lick hungrily all the more. Over a short period of time, the wolf will grow dizzy and disoriented. In no time, it will die from blood loss, literally drinking itself to death.

Eskimo Wolf Trap often quoted in Sermons (2013)
Finalist Artist: Robert Zhao RenHui, Singapore
Description: A mixed media installation built to serve as an enigmatic display, the artist captures the moment of anticipating the undertones violence by human against animals. He reveals the complex food chain structure between human and animals. Using animal trap as an ideal metaphor, he tells stories of human indulgence in the art of animal hunting for the sake of survival.


These are a few installation of the exhibition by APB Foundation Signature Art Prize 2014 Finalists. The exhibition is ongoing from 14 November 2014 to 15 March 2015. At the end of the tour, you may vote for your favourite exhibit. If you are an art enthusiast, do pay a visit at the Singapore Art Museum as it may worth your time. Click to view admission details and other ongoing exhibitions.

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