WAYS OF WANDERING

Conceptualised by Noorlinah Mohamed

Ways of Wandering examines the footprints left behind and those yet to come. Reflecting on ideas that matter to us, things that we want changed, the issues we want heard, the stories we want told, the passion and commitment we possess in making them.

Join us as we capture the journey in still and moving images, and in sound and text.

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Ways of Wandering
Friday, 11 July 2014 | 7.00pm - 8.00pm
Tiong Bahru Park


04-Jul-2014
On Friday, 11 July 2014, join us at Tiong Bahru Park
for Ways of Wandering!

  • Please arrive 15 minutes before the start of the performance (6.45pm).
  • The gathering point is at the Formal Garden and the performance trail will start from there. 
  • Look out for our HUGE O.P.E.N. BALLOONS as well!
  • Come dressed in comfortable clothing and footwear for this walking journey. 

Getting there:
By Bus
Take bus services 33, 32, 608, 16, 63, 64 (for the bus stop at Tiong Bahru Road), and bus services 14, 32, 64, 65, 608, 855 (for the bus stop at Lower Delta Road).

By Car
Limited parking spaces available at Tiong Bahru Park. Other parking spaces available at Tiong Bahru Plaza and surrounding HDB estates.

By MRT
Nearest MRT station at Tiong Bahru MRT (East-West Line) located 3 minutes away from the train station.

Ways of Wandering
Saturday, 12 July | 8.00am - 9.00am
MacRitchie Reservoir


03-Jul-2014
On Saturday, 12 July 2014, 8am join us at MacRitchie Reservoir 
for Ways of Wandering!

  • Gather at the Reservoir Deck near Mushroom Cafe
  • There are monkeys out and about in the morning, please do not feed them nor attempt to touch them
  • Observe the cleanliness of the park by not littering
  • Enjoy a good morning walk while watching the performance by coming in comfortable clothing and footwear with good grip

Getting there:
By Bus
Take bus services 132, 163, 165, 166, 167, 640, 52 or 980.
Alight at the bus stops along Upper Thomson Road.

By Car
Parking is available at Venus Drive, MacRitchie Reservoir.

By MRT
Nearest MRT station at Marymount MRT (Circle Line) located 2.00km away from MacRitchie Reservoir.

A Mother's Love


12-Jun-2014
This sweater belongs to my late mother.

My mother cherished this sweater very much not because of the material or design but
because this was a gift from her only son, my brother.

My mother was a typical traditional woman, she would show more love to her son
than to her daughter but looking at this sweater I could feel not only the love my mum
had for her son but also the love she had for me.

I accompanied my mum almost everyday throughout day and night at the hospital in
her last few weeks of her life. At times, my mum would ask me to put on the sweater
when the bedroom turned cold and at times, I would put on the sweater on her.

Even though I knew my mom would always give more love to her son but the share of
using this sweater with my mum in her last few weeks made me felt so deeply of my
mother's love.

I love you mum, always!

- Ho Pui Fun, Ways of Wandering participant

The Little Girl


12-Jun-2014
I once knew a little girl who was lost.

You hardly saw her in the day. Sometimes you might catch a glimpse of her here and there, usually behind a notebook while she takes your order. When she comes out at night, she hides behind her mask of powder and rouge, to disappear among the hundreds of faces that thrived in the dark. Decked in leather and lace, her skirts and heels, she couldn’t even recognize herself when she looked in the mirror. That’s how she liked it. She didn’t need to be herself when she could be one of them. Who she is, isn’t enough.

There’s nothing to this story you have not already heard before. Maybe you’ve gone through it. Then you’ll understand what heartbreak does to a person.

He left her for a good friend of hers. She introduced them at a party and never suspected
anything. We’ve all heard this story. But she didn’t want to be a victim. Her heart was broken and she was going to be the one who fixes it. She didn’t want any one’s pity, or help. She’ll be damned before she trusts someone to help her. She can do this, she can do this by herself and she will be the self-made woman she believes she can be!

“Show me that thong, baby.” “So it’s black today, huh?” “I like that, but bring your thin one next time.” At night, she would choose her men, and the hours to follow would be sweet revenge on the man who wronged her. But shame rises with the morning sun, like relentless waves beating against a rock and eroding pieces of her heart away, day by day.

“Well, I’ve just downloaded Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. So I guess pyjamas will do.”

She was surprised. “Excuse me?”

“Like, your favourite pyjamas. A shirt or whatever.”

She couldn’t believe her ears. “You want me in my pyjamas…”

“Well, yeah. What else do you sleep in?”

He had to be joking. He couldn’t be serious. But we really did watch Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs and sat around in comfortable undies and pyjamas. It was weird to just chill with another human being and just be. He didn’t need to be impressed. He didn’t need her to do anything but watch this silly animated film with him. Then she went home happy. Still lost, but happy.

It will take years for her to find her way again. From what I hear, she’s still searching. But for now, she’s lost and happy.

- Shana Yap, Ways of Wandering participant

She's Smiling Down On Me


11-Jun-2014
Hello, everybody! Today, I will like to share with you a story about this blouse, a
blouse that belonged to my mom.

It was after dinner, Lee was chatting with her mom, telling her about her day. Lee was
recently coasted for a role in a musical and she would like to borrow some of her
mom's clothing.

Lee: "Mommy, can I borrow your clothes for my musical?"
Mommy: " Siao ah? My clothes are not suitable for you!"

But Lee could see that her mom was pleased with her request.

1 week, 2 weeks, 1 month, 2 months have passed. Lee was very engrossed in the
rehearsal for the musical and neglected her mom.

Lee: "Hello, mommy... I am not coming back for dinner tonight. I have rehearsal."
Mommy: "Again? Ok la... Up to you."

Lee felt guilty that she neglected er mom and planned for a family trip with her mom
and planned for a family with her mom to Bangkok.

Lee: "Mommy, come over here. See this! Mommy, do you want this? Mommy, let me
take a photo for you."

They had a good time in Bangkok. Lots of food, lots of fun and laughter and lots of
photos. The day after the trip, Lee went home for dinner. She sensed that something
was wrong, when she opened the door...

Mommy: "Lee ah... I am having heartache, my chest hurt!"
Lee: "Mommy, shall I call the ambulance?"
Mommy: "Choi! I don't want to go to the hospital. Just send me to the clinic
downstairs."

Lee quickly get the wheelchair and helped her mom onto it. She pushed the
wheelchair as fast as she could, assuring her mom that she would be reaching the
clinic soon.

Unfortunately, without Lee knowing, her mom passed away even before they could
reach the clinic. The doctor told Lee that her mom passed away because of heart
attack. It was something that was unforeseen, something that no one could prevent.

On the day of the performance, Lee put on her mom's blouse. She stood behind the
curtain, waiting for the curtain to be opened, for the show to start.

She smiled to herself as she knew that her mom was watching her from above, telling
her friends, "That's my daughter! And she is wearing my clothes!"

Thank you.

- Sharon Tan, Ways of Wandering participant

A Mother's Love


11-Jun-2014
Good morning everybody!

I would like to share a piece which is full of love, passion, hardworking and some
tears.

I remember it was 15 years ago. My mother was 82 years old.
At that time I noticed that my mother, all of a sudden, behaved very strange and
weird. She went round to collect cloth remnants from relatives, neighbours and friends. I was quite annoyed that she was keeping all the rubbish.

So I asked her: "Mum, why are you keeping bundles and bundles of rubbish?"

"Rubbish? You just see, I want to turn these rubbish into something valuable!"

Since she refused to tell, I don't bother also.

One day, I saw her matching the colours of the remnants and cut them into small
pieces of different shapes; triangles, square and rectangular. I stared at the pieces with curiosity; she just gave me a look then carried on with her task.

Later I saw her sewing and hemming to join the pieces together. I suspected something was happening. I offered. "Mum, can I join you?"

"Sure! You should join me to put some effort in it too!"

Whenever I'm free I will sit opposite her and we worked together. Around 2 weeks time all the tiny patches became a bug piece of material. When this piece was done, I was so touched that I hugged her: "Thank you mum for your brilliant idea. I'm sure they will like it."

Because at that time, my daughter was expecting and was due soon.

"This patch work blanket had both our effort, love, passion and hardwork in it. It is the best gift to welcome the first born baby girl into our family."

Do you think is gorgeous and beautiful?

This was the story of this creation.

"Mum! We loved you! You are always in our hearts!"

Thank you!

- Beatrice Chien, Ways of Wandering participant

Firsts


11-Jun-2014
I like to Sing. Singing is an outlet for me to express myself.

I remember feeling ''butterflies in my tummy'' just before every performance!
This feeling is always there, regardless of type & scale of performance: it only varies in terms of its intensity.

We had to juggle sch & choir practices that can be up to 3 times per week whenever there's an upcoming concert.

Harmonising with one another can be tough. The occasional sour sour remark by you-know-who can either 1) demotivate or 2) spur us on.

Looking back, the knowledge that we're "all in this together", kept us bonded and we showed up week after week, for choir.

- Jane Ang, Ways of Wandering participant

Love


10-Jun-2014
Last month on the eve of my 64th birthday, my lost grandson out of thin air, wanted
me to agree to his "triple 2" request.

As my 4 grandsons are my life and soul, I happily and doubtfully agreed.

2 weeks after my birthday, he gave me this as a belated present. He told me that he
spent $2 to buy the material from the bookshop, 2 days to thread the tiny rubber bands
to make into this necklace.

Oh, that was his "triple 2" request.

It was awesome feeling, an active 10 years old boy bothered to do this for me. I felt so
blessed and will share his actions with people I know.

Now I wish to pick a word to describe his action and that is "Love".

- Estella Kwok, Ways of Wandering participant

"Put It On!"


10-Jun-2014
"Put it on!" that usual voice of hers shouted. This scarf is a gift from my sister. It is a
ravishingly beautiful. No not only that, it folds with piles of happiness. Eccentric. You
can possibly say that it is just any other piece of cloth that everyone else owns. But
this scarf means a lot to me.

I wear it almost everywhere I go. I will wrap it around my hand while walking in the
park. It feels like she's holding my hand tightly and do no want to let it go. When I
feel hot, I will wear it around my head and it feels like she's protecting me from the
hot sun. I could feel those tiny fabrics brush through my hair, gently. It seems like this
scarf had become soft of a 'second-life' to me. I remember a time where my sister
caught me having a flu. "Cover it with your scarf!" So I did. I covered my mouth with
the scarf. "I look like a ninja!" I said. “That's what makes you look like a superhero!"
I mean, seriously? But that's what made me smile. Well, I lost this scarf many times
but somehow, it returned back to me miraculously.

There were moments in my life where I just thought of letting it go once. Another
moment, I just do not want to. You know it when people keep pressuring you to do so.
And it's killing me sometimes! But, I don't care! I still want to wear it. Even at the
most ridiculous moment as ever, I still find happiness with it. My sister being as
'creative' as she were, asking me to cover my eyes with the scarf one day. "So that it
can protect your eyes from all the dusts!" Ok, I remember we were near the road that
time. So I did cover my eyes with it. Ok, no. I did not actually. We ended up laughing
about it and how pathetic it could get. And suddenly, just fills out the entire place,
gasping through the air. That's happiness and the joy I felt inside. Now, how could
you possibly ask me to let go of all these memories? That's the only memories left of
her? And then, the silence becomes deafening.

She had left me, forever. And I miss her.

- Azimah Mozerin, Ways of Wandering participant

Why?


10-Jun-2014
Let me get this straight - I never wanted to fix him. Change him? Darling - don't you
understand? You cannot fix a broken man. Look: you can try to piece a precious vase
back together, or maybe even succeed in getting it not to leak. But it will always
remember being broken.

He gifted me with the broken pieces of his soul, you know. I never knew what to do
with it.

But then - who am I to say anything, really? Because when he calls, I answer. Like a
pathetic sailor to the singing mermaids. Of course I drowned.

If you saw Atlas, the giant who hold the world on his shoulders; if you saw that he
stood, blood running down his heat, his arms trembling, his knees buckling but still
trying to hold the world aloft with the last of his strength, and the greater his effort the
heavier the world ore down upon his shoulders... What would you do?

I left.

I used to love gifts.

But this... Wasn't even meant to be one

We were at his house that day - studying - when he got bored and rifled through his
closet. He took to out and ... Draped it over me.

Just like that.

Why?

- Loh An Lin, Ways of Wandering participant

My Mom's Dark-Blue Cardigan


09-Jun-2014

This is a story of a dark-blue cardigan. This belonged to a 64-year-old lady who was
diagnosed with colon cancer in 2008. After surgery, the doctor said there was no
spread to the surrounding areas, the whole family was overjoyed. But a spread to her
lungs was found in the following year, it was stage 4 with a little chance to live. So
with finances she had, she came to Singapore to do chemotherapy, away from her
husband, away from her son, it was tough. She couldn't make it at the end and passed
away in March 2012. But her 2 years here was full of odious memories and this is the
witness of her life's journey. She was my mom.

It was tiring after my chemo today, how many have I had it? Maybe this is my 20th
session? Needles here and there, PET scans, blood tests, I'm so used to it by now. I
remember my first and second medicine gave my ulcers all over my mouth and throat,
very painful to swallow food but at least I can keep my hair. This third one made me
lose lots of this, my head is getting thinner and thinner.

But I feel so fortunate to have my lovely 2 daughter with me going through all this. I
feel bad for them many times, I give them lots of trouble. They have to work full
time, take care of me, doctors, medication, think how to pay for everything.

Sometimes I wish I could see their faces whole day, but I know it's not possible.
That's why I'm excited every evening like this. They're coming back soon, I'm going
to see them again and share our days. Though my day is not a lot really - cooking,
cleaning up, doing laundry, sometimes excises. Yes I still go to Tiong Bahru park for
a walk, I'm trying to keep fit, I still wanna see my family as long. I can.

Another 1 hour. I'm happy. Let me listen to my favorite Christian radio station while
waiting. His has been my friend. The messages, the tune always strengthen my faith
and give me hope.

- Natalie Kyoko, Ways of Wandering participant

Story of a Bride


09-Jun-2014
She stood in front of the mirror in her wedding gown.

Tears welled up in her eyes.

"Is this for real?" She asked. "Am I really getting married today?"

For many years she was single. She recalled the many times that she had cried and
asked why she was still single when most of her friends we attached or married. He
remembered the loneliness and sadness she felt, especially during weekends and
public holidays.

"Ben is here!!" Someone shouted.

A big smile appeared on her face as she dried her eyes.

"It's for real!! Today's the day I become Mrs Goh."

- Lyn Wong, Ways of Wandering participant

Pet Rock


09-Jun-2014
See this little rock? Now imagine a whole quarry, tons upon tons of this very same rock for
miles. Have you ever wondered how rocks become skyscrapers? Well, the first step is to

break them up into something like this.

In India, many scrawny little boys break rocks under the sweltering heat of the sun, so that
we can build our skyscrapers. Those are the very same boys who will have the time of their
lives playing cricket on the roadside, with no more than a stick and an old rubber ball.

In Singapore, our scrawny little boys are hunched and myopic; cooped up in high-rise buildings mugging their childhood away. 

When I pick this up, I ask myself: “when was the last time I had fun?”


- Stephanie Sim, Ways of Wandering participants

Performing


09-Jun-2014
My journey as an actor began 4 years ago, when I entered my first audition. West Side Story. Nerves and excitement filled me up as I waited for my turn. Soon, I could out, I GOT IN! And so, the rehearsals began.

10 long months of blood, sweat and tears put into the effort. However, with each passing moment, I realised I was starting to become arrogant. I thought I was irreplaceable. No, I believed I was irreplaceable. I skipped rehearsals. I came late, or not at all. No one could take my role. But I was wrong.

Arrogance soon gave way to humility and I was knocked back into reality. But I got back on my feet and worked hard once again, the day before bump-in, we were given this shirt. I remember looking at it with satisfaction, thinking "I've reached my goal, my achievement. All those hard work finally paying off." But then, as I look closer, I realise that it meant more than that to me. I now know what my position is, what I want in life.

Performing.

- Khairi Ruzaini, Ways of Wandering participant

The Tale of a Scarf


08-Jun-2014

There once was a young girl, she did the best with everything she did, and tried to be happy.

Then one day, she received a gift. She wondered where it came from, and how it came into
being. It had bright colours, woven with intricate patterns. It was soft and light to touch, and
transformed into a multitude of purposes. It was a beautiful multi-coloured scarf.

When she put the scarf on, she started to have dreams. There were dreams of places that she
had not seen, there were sights and sounds she had not heard.
The scarf was more it seemed, it was a magic carpet! The girl hopped on it, and she was on a
journey! It brought her on many adventures, to cold Nordic lands, and warm sultry beaches.

She arrived home from these adventures, excited to tell of these tales. When she entered the
door, there was a strange symphony playing in the house. When the dwellers opened their
mouths, the words came out disjointed and incoherent. It was a disharmonious disco,
destroying things of beauty, destroying the truth.

That night when she put on the scarf, it no longer transformed into many delightful shapes
and purposes. That night there were no colours, no dreams, no adventures. She wondered why
had the scarf lost its ability, it merely hung around her neck, uncomfortable, heavy, silent. She
removed the scarf from her neck, tentatively, and hung it in her closet. She wondered when
the scarf she would ever wear the scarf again. When would it bring her on adventures again?

Epilogue

There were a little pair of hands, digging through the closet. Deep, buried within, there was
something bright and colourful. The little girl, pulled it out, and held it up against herself, it
transformed into a glamorous gown, just like a little princess. She pulled it off, and it turned
into a cape. It was beautiful, multi coloured and transformed into a multitude of purposes.
What was it?

- Gracie Teo, Ways of Wandering participant

Some Things Are Best Forgotten


08-Jun-2014
This is a piece of clothing that I own, one which I had forgotten about. Perhaps it is
with good intention that it was forgotten, about the circumstances surrounding how
this item came into my possession.

But to know where you're headed, you need to know and understand where you
started from.

It was the year 2010.
Her would was dark and cold, some nights stormy, others stuffy.
Always struggling to be bold.
You see, her days had merged into one.
She was alive, but dead inside.
One night, she sat and clicked.
She liked looking at world maps for some reason, perhaps it was the promise of
adventure, dreams and escape.
Chat window.
Belgium,
Effiel Tower? Effiel Tower? Childhood dream
I can make it come true
She felt a strange surge in her heart, this was something she needed to do for herself,
A sort of soul-searching journey.

And so bags were packed and she as ready to go.
A familiar voice stopped her,
"Together? Ok!" And so sisters, hand in hand took their bags and off they went.
Planes, trains, hotel room the purple line, favourite color.
"Look, it's the Effiel Tower, take a picture!'
*gasp*
(It was then the girl saw the jacket)

No, I can't.
Why not?
I just can't.
What do you mean?
I don't understand.
What do you mean, you don't understand.
I don't understand, 5 years,
How did it end?
5 years was supposed to be a new beginning.
How did 5 years cease to exit?
Who am I? What is my purpose? What am I supposed to do?
It was then the girl realised, she had to let go.
Sometimes you just have to make a decision.
Sometimes in life, you just have to say 'yes' to life.
Yes!
The girl and the jacket, in that moment, were changed and renewed.
Change is a second chance,
A chance to reinvent,

- Varshini, Ways of Wandering participant

Untitled


08-Jun-2014
This person is excited. In the beginning this person contemplates between excitement
and anxiety. It is finally happening, and it is finally happening that this person has
stepped forward. He would bow and kneel for he has dressed for the occasion. This
person plays back the message to get the address of the place where every person this
person has known will hug him and brink back to the fold of life. It is exciting and
this is not a dream. This is real. This person has made every effort to say in one place.

Every person this person has known is waiting at the bench in the park. "There they
are, it's everyone." Everyone is smiling. Amanda has a bob. Marcus is with a new girl.
For a moment this person is creeped out by this scene. But it would be so be for this
person to be depressed on the happiest day. This person has not gotten a haircut,
neither has this person had anyone to have his hands held with. This person' spins
around and cover his ears. This person lets out a laugh but only to cover his gasping,
voiceless mouth with his hands. This person runs in the same route he took to the
park. This person remembers he has left the key in the keyhole of the door. This
person is going to validate his absence with this excuse.

In the shower this person brings his head to the water. This person collects water in
his cupped hands and brings it to his dry pale body. This person can stay this way and
hold his breath. If there were contests where you have to hold your breath the longest
this person surely wins. An Olympic medal might redeem this person in the eyes of
every person this person has ever known. But no such contests exist thus there is no
redeeming. This person mourns for the fact he ruined his chance of being loved by
everyone. This person mourns for the fact he has ruined his chance of being loved by
everyone. This person feels the weight of the tragedy on his shoulders. This person
sighs. This person closes his eyes. This person sleeps.

- Aiden Taufiq, Ways of Wandering participant

It's Not Things That Make It Good...YOU Do


08-Jun-2014
It was a blue day when it's rosy pinkness called to me.

And drew me back to it.

It's silky companionship mad me feel good.

And every time I felt good, something good happened.

Then it ripped.

But nothing changed, I still felt good.

And good things still happened.

Because I believed...
It's not things that make it good...YOU do

- Susan Penrice Tyrie, Ways of Wandering participant

A Whole New World


07-Jun-2014
Arriving in Singapore. It's Saturday, 11th of February, 2011.
I just landed.

Liz: I will wait for you at the arrival fate
Wait, I'll straighten my white blouse.
What is that sound?

TNGS... TNGs... TNGS...

Oh, it's just my heart, beating so fast.
Arrival gate, arrival gate...
The airport's so nice!

TNGS... TNGs... TNGS...

This is new. 'Change is good.'

TNGS... TNGs...

Will I find a job? Will they like me? Why am I so afraid?!
I miss my family, my friends, my home.

TNGS... TNGs...

Oh! There's the arrival gate! L12!

Welcome to Singapore.

- Aisa Mae, Ways of Wandering participant

A Gift That Lasted Through The Ages


07-Jun-2014

这件衣我曾穿着参与民族服装秀。
我也曾穿着在月光快乐的跳着土风舞。
这是我那又节俭又勤劳的堂姐送给我的。 
堂姐自己开了一间裁缝店,又教学生裁剪。 
一天她的头剧痛,右边的眼睛睁不开,有呕吐。医生说这是急性青光眼。
迟来了两天,右眼是瞎了, 原来他、她已经头痛了很多天。 
她在模糊的日子过了四年, 又被乳癌夺走了她粉红色的人生。 
后来我们在她房间里,看到了很多美丽的一些刺绣和手工。 
(如绒布花, 纸花等。。。) 
打开她的衣橱,哇! 那么多的漂亮,五颜六色的衣服,这些她就是舍不得用,舍不得穿。 
堂姐在少女时代就学会了很多很多的手工艺,又学会了裁剪。 
唯一这件衣,是她买来的。

- Choo Ai Keow, Ways of Wandering participant

Reborn


07-Jun-2014
I was fat. When I was in Primary school my I friends; even my good friends always
teased me. It wasn't until one day when my aunt brought me shopping that I found it.
There, right there. A really expensive pair of trousers; together with this belt. "I really
want this." But my aunt bought it for me! I was delighted! Since then, knowingly or
unknowingly, I would always be wearing this belt. It somehow boosted my
confidence; it was like an armor, a shield, protecting me. Every time I wore it, the
way I walk, the way I talk, the way I look at people would be different. And then, I
got thinner, and then I realized, it was not the belt anymore, it was me. Now, I'm free.

- Felix Lim, Ways of Wandering participant

You Know That Feeling?


07-Jun-2014
You know that feeling… when the world suddenly feels really big, and you’re really tiny and
nothing you do is good enough? But you know that other feeling? No… not that one… the
other one. The one that makes you feel like you’re actually really not as bad as you thought
you were.

Amongst the people and rack of clothes, our arms brushed against each other and our eyes
met. I knew almost immediately, he was the one. The best thing is that I had never been more
correct. No one gave me warmer hugs than him. No one had cuddles more comforting. No
one else would wipe my tears better than he did. We were together almost everyday, every
night, we were inseparable. until one day I left home and found out that he wasn’t with me!
How would I be now? Frightened? Scared? Alone?!

But no. I realised. I was alright. Even on days we’re not together, I know he’d be home,
waiting for me.

- Nur Juliana Chan, Ways of Wandering participant

That Blue Dress


06-Jun-2014
Hi everyone!

This blue dress was a gift from my mother and also reminds me of my mother about
50 years ago.

My mother was sick, very sick.

"How are you feeling mum?" (In Cantonese)

At that time, we were still very young. Helpless, worries.

One night, I had a dream. I dreamt of Goddess of Mercy. Suddenly, I woke up
wounding what to do. Ah! I'll tell my auntie about my dream!

"Auntie, auntie, I dreamt of Goddess of Mercy!" (In Cantonese)

Auntie said, "Oh! I think we should pray to Goddess of Mercy about your mother's
condition. (In Cantonese)

Slowly, few months later, my mother recovered. She is now 88, healthy and playing
mahjong almost everyday.

- Alice Cheah, Ways of Wandering participant

The Apron


06-Jun-2014
I hated this apron. I hated it each time I touched it. It was in 1959. For a few
moments, each act on, after lunch, I had to wear this apron. This means time to start
the fire, time to stir the big pot of koyok, the Hal mixture. It means I had to spend 3 or
4 hours at the hot stove stirring and stirring. I was anxious, hot and sweaty. The smell!
How I hated that smell.

As a dutiful child, I had to obey my parents. But I had school homework to do. There
were many interesting storybooks waiting for me to read.

Yes, I remember once I toppled the whole pot of this hot sticky mixture while stealing
time to read my storybook. The marks on my hands and legs were evidence of the
splatter. Luckily I had the apron on. it had protect me from severe burn.

60 years later. Look how strong, hardy and tolerant I am today. My perspective to this
apron and this whole episode of stirring has changed. It was my training days (just
like in Shaolin Martial Arts training). I had learnt to manage my time and prioritize
my activities and studies. Thanks to my parents for this training which shaped my
character. Thanks to this apron, I am saved from being scalded.

- Anna See, Ways of Wandering participant

Independance


06-Jun-2014
I won this in a fight. I was 14, independence well served. I told her "but nobody else
has a green jacket!", "They have MY size, it will fit me, it fits me and if it doesn't, I
will fit it." She wanted to stop me from drifting away but I wouldn't let her and the
poor salesgirl stood there like a third wheel between my mom and I and we fought
and fought. I said, ok, consolation prize you can pay for it.

And then I realised. I didn't actually like the jacket that much.

- Kenneth Chia, Ways of Wandering participant

Dawn's Message to You


06-Jun-2014
What do I want to tell the audience?
I want them to know that this pan holds memories of family for me. Of a time when we would
gather in the kitchen to help mummy bake and cook to feed the family.
I want them to know, too, that this was what I wanted to be able to pass down to my own
children, but in their absence, the pan now sits alone and neglected in the bomb shelter,
remembering only its glory days.
I want them to dream with me, hope with me, that the pan will see the light of day again.

The Story

Once, I was life.

The children flocked around me, eager hands reaching for my gifts.

"Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you!" Ah, I watched them all grow up. Little Khai.
Susie. Sam.

Her. Especially her. I was there when she learnt to bake for the first time, and there for her
until she mastered the art of making the perfect chocolate cake, so moist, so rich, there was
never enough to go round.

I was her favorite, her link to home, to childhood. With me, she discovered her joy for food.

She has forgotten me now, and I am cast aside. Is this the rest of my life then? Better to have
lived and lost than not to have lived at all? Maybe. But life, it is so fleeting. Memories. Nothing
but memories.

Ah, but hear. She comes. Today, will she remember?

- Dawn Lau, Ways of Wandering participant

"I Told You Not To Wash It"


05-Jun-2014
I told you not to wash it.
I know you meant well, but I don't remember asking for your help.
You never listen. My perfect shirt is gone.
You do this to me, and then you leave?
You think you can just go like that?
Without a word!
You can go back to your family, go back to your country.
But this is your home. Your home is here.

- Eqtaffaq Saddem Hussain (Sam), Ways of Wandering participant

It's All Coming Back to Me Now


05-Jun-2014
Cherished, worn and now torn
Hidden like many others
Childhood years long gone
Forgotten memory kept between layers
Lies dormant within me

Young as I was twelve and no more
Yearn to take flight a chance then so rare
Princess f the family their one and only
Bead and butter a burden to all
Emotions swirled and surged as most would know

Assurance and love prevailed excitement and smile revealed
One tiny wish fulfilled
Awaiting her time to fly to see the blue blue sky
First of her life

Destination down under filled with adventure
As the plane flew longings for home grew
Even now I still feel

- Cecilia Ling, Ways of Wandering participant

Decimal Points: 810, a Preview with Neo Kim Seng and Joavien Ng


05-May-2014
In Neo Kim Seng’s debut production, we were granted a glimpse into his world and the very things dear to his heart to warrant a desire for it to emerge via the subconscious act of hallucination, brought forward through the conduit of our very own dancer mentor Joavien Ng and their cast of nine actors. 

I was terribly excited to be invited to the preview of Decimal Point 810. The first step into the black box of the Substation made it very clear that we were guests to the recesses of Kim Seng’s wildly eclectic mind. 

And what a ride! The ebb and flow of the pieces interspersed with high-energy dances (who could forget the sensually erotic hospital scene, or the sudden morphing into a heart pumping K- Pop routine?) had all the intensity of a favourite dance floor remix: the ones whose lyrics seemed to click with something within you while you are off gyrating with your partner. The seamless transition then, to the heart of the piece left me quietly moved. The emotional honesty of the actors was palpable, echoing Kim Seng’s quietly heartfelt eulogy to his mentors William Teo and Christina Sergeant.

That is what I enjoyed most about this piece: the fact that it was so intimately devised by the production team and the cast, and how such a similar journey to find the reflection of our own truths is very much the crux of Ways of Wandering. Personally, I cannot wait to begin this journey. 

- Loh An Lin, Student, Ways of Wandering participant

Jeremiah Choy's Creative Planning Session


24-Apr-2014
Waving in the wind, they dry under the watchful eyes of the sun. Sieving through these pieces of garment, personalities are illuminated, compartmentalized and deconstructed. Clothing, it is an important way through which one’s individual character is reflected and expressed.

Capturing life’s legacy from the communal externalities to the individual foibles. From birth, joy, adolescence, pain, adulthood, love to death and bliss. The dress adds credibility, draws laughter or invites scorn to the wearer.

One could even sense the genuineness of the heart when measured holistically with verbal signals and non-vocal cues.

For some, attire is a given datum. For others, a cultural adherence or even a complex contextual dreamscape. You could follow status quo. Be abreast with the dominant trends in fashion promoted by peers and associates. Or be different, stand out and blaze newer paths.

When habitually soul searching and in pursuit of a deeper significance, conflict arises. A state of perfect symmetry co-exists between one’s appearance and identity, between one’s form and substance. Turning occasionally into a flux when conforming to state and societal ideals.

This is a personal search for my sartorial integrity. It is a progressive journey over space, time and a life-long search for personal authenticity. My moral well being affects the way I dress and present myself to others.

Collectively, we will form essential thoughts and anecdotes in the exploration of truth via attire.

- Tren Imus, 'Technopreneur', Ways of Wandering participant

Sharda Harrison's Movement Workshop & Picnic


24-Apr-2014

The rain didn't stop us from having fun at this Social when we all got cosy and got to know each other better. After a rejuvenating workshop with Sharda, we all proceeded to bond with one another through the food that the other participants graciously provided.

At the end of the day we felt that words cannot express how we felt. Hence, we allowed our minds to wander created the image that you see above. After all there is an old saying: "A piece speaks a thousand words".

- Nur Liana Abdullah, Teacher & Siti Rarfidah Rahim, Arts Educator; both Ways of Wandering participants  

Philip Tan's Creative Planning & Exploratory Session


12-Apr-2014
I went for the Creative Planning & Exploratory Session with Philip Tan last Thursday as I have chosen music as my secondary art form. I came with an open mind and was very curious about how the Social would go about as I did not attend the music taster workshop. I have to say, it was a really interesting and fun evening.

As I have never met Philip Tan before, I was expecting it to be sort of like a formal talk session. However, I was wrong. The whole atmosphere was so lively and fun. As soon as he walked in, he was full of passion and enthusiasm when he spoke to us. He was genuinely interested in what each and every one of the participants had to said and he made all of us feel at ease. It was interesting to hear what each of the participants had to offer as well as the ideas that they gave.

Through this sharing session, we were all able to figure out how we can come together to produce a really good piece. I am looking forward to see what we can produce as a team under Philip Tan’s leadership and I’m sure that this whole process to create a piece would be as fun and as enjoyable as this session.

- Cheryl Tan, Student, Ways of Wandering participant

Mirrors in the Dark, an Exhibition & Dialogue Session with Lee Wen


06-Apr-2014
Truth be told, I stepped into the doors of Grey Projects not knowing what was ahead of me. Despite going in clueless, I’m surprised and happy that I left feeling like as if the experience had surpassed all my expectations.

I jumped straight to immersing myself in the artworks by Lee Wen and Gabriella Butti that were highly personal and intriguing. Lee Wen began his dialogue with a shirt that exclaimed I am not a performance artist, followed by a simple statement to begin the dialogue, “All artists are performing artists” and true enough, what I saw were elaborate scenes played passionately. He guided us around and told us about the people, places and events behind the details of each piece. Through the paper and the oil pastels poured the emotions and stories that you could feel meant the world to the creator.

I was particularly inspired by how Lee Wen took inspiration from the little things around him. Little symbols became huge and everything I never noticed before started to speak to me. Although the pieces were personal to his life, I began to see my own in bits of it. It was something that stayed on my mind even days after the Social. To create something that is personal, yet allowing people to resonate with it and to see themselves as a part of it. It was this inclusivity that made his work so welcoming despite its dark undertones.

Pondering about it has definitely renewed my excitement for Ways of Wandering and I can only hope to be able to evoke just a portion of that inclusivity that I felt at the Social for the project!

- N. Juliana Chan, Student, Ways of Wandering participant


Mirrors in the Dark
Exhibition by Lee Wen

26 March - 27 April 2014

Venue: Grey Projects, 6B Kim Tian Road, Tiong Bahru, Singapore 169246
Opening Hours: Wed - Fri, 1pm - 7pm. Sat, 1pm - 6pm

For more details, please visit http://www.greyprojects.org/exhibitions.html

Jason Wee's Visual Arts Taster Workshop


27-Mar-2014
Saturday, 15 March 2014.

Over 50 participants attended Jason Wee’s Visual Arts Taster Workshop at 72–13. Jason’s task for the participants began with a newspaper article. Read the article, identify words, circle them with a marker, connect them to each other and present. Everyone was captivated by how something as mundane as reading a newspaper article could transform into a possibility for art making. Everyone left the session with high praise for Jason and shared with me their personal reflections and thoughts about the experience.

“I feel really inspired to create new stuff now that I’ve graduated.
I am looking forward to finding myself again.”
– Vinise Kwa

“Lovely hands-on way to explain contemporary art and 
how there’s hardly any original idea 
but new work is built on predecessors.” 
– Kevin Lam

“Interesting usage of a daily, mundane object 
like a newspaper to make it our own.” 
– Quek Hong Shin

“I found the session very interesting. 
I never thought we can do so much with a piece of newspaper. 
Truly, imagination has no end.” 
– Pallavi Agrawal

“Looking forward to future sessions, 
looking forward to ways to understand myself better.
I can’t wait to explore more.”
– Ririen Saptorini

- Benedict Leong, Project Executive, The O.P.E.N.

The O.P.E.N. Call


04-Mar-2014
15 February 2014, Ways of Wandering, The O.P.E.N.’s participatory arts project, had an OPEN Call. Over 275 people signed up for “taster” workshops. Each taster workshop – from music, dance to theatre – offered a sampling of the possible creative processes the participants would experience if they were part of Ways of Wandering. Our sponsored coffee-machine from Boncafe was switched on and ready to brew; our artist-mentors were revved up and ready to go; our volunteers were briefed by Noorlinah Mohamed, Director, The O.P.E.N.; and Kheng, with press kits in her hand, was looking out for the press intending to report on the event. And I? I was sitting nervously at the reception table, with name lists in front of me, waiting to welcome the participants.

Within minutes, the once pristine, zen-like space of 72 – 13, was bustling with crowds of participants. Some hunched over discussing which art-form to choose, others laughing together, or some quietly sitting by themselves waiting for their session to start, or better yet, making a new friend! It was a beautiful sight to behold. 

Little surprises made the day special. So many who signed up for one “taster” workshop stayed on for the entire day, “tasting” different sessions offered by the different artist-mentors, soaking up the creative juices flowing through the space. We watched the participants, aged 17 to 76, with different levels of experiences, from different backgrounds, throwing themselves into the exercises with such vivid imagination. We were affected by their openness and their infectious spirit of adventure. 

The O.P.E.N. had begun, and we knew we were all onto an amazing journey!

- Benedict Leong, Project Executive, The O.P.E.N.

This is a test journal entry


24-Feb-2014
At a lunch meeting with several arts administrators in January 2014, someone at the table highlighted the recent arts policy shift in Singapore towards ‘engagement’, as opposed to ‘outreach’. Curiously I asked if there were any difference between the two. There must be a difference, insisted the next. Otherwise the change would only be cosmetic. But the catch is, ‘engagement’ is an oft-used word, easy to discuss but hard to implement. A few weeks later, while on a work trip in Washington D.C. visiting schools and arts centres, the word ‘engagement’ surfaced again. Keen to know what others think of public engagement, I made my rounds, speaking to organisers of engagement programmes. I wanted to know what and how engagement is perceived and organised. Here is a compilation of some key phrases that surfaced in the discussions: Engagement . . . is about communicating with other people; getting people outside our normal circle excited and interested about the things we are passionate about; making something engaging and accessible; a two-way dialogue, a possible exchange; making connections between people, between ideas, between different ways of doing something; bringing the topic, subject matter, out of its conventional domain and into the public realm; negotiations between what you think you know and what you hope and yet to know; advancing the knowledge and generating awareness, like advocacy.

Hello this is a second paragraph.
Copyright 2014. Arts House Limited.
Unless otherwise stated, other images by Jeannie Ho