Ho Tzu Nyen

Subverted Boundaries, Sculpture Square
17 Jun 2003 to 24 Aug 2003

Self Portrait Project

In the Self Portrait Project, Ho Tzu Nyen puts together 252 (7 rolls of film) framed photos of himself. Travelling around various locations in Singapore with a simple "snap-shot" camera, he requests passerbys to take snapshots of himself. The photo-takers are told that they have complete artistic freedom to compose the picture as they wish. However, they are restricted to just one shot and their personal details are collected after the photo is taken. These unedited photos are displayed, framed and labelled with the particulars of the photo-taker who is to be regarded as the actual author of the work.

The final work is a composite creative vision by the people randomly selected by the artist, their commonality being their physical co-existence with the artist at a particular place in time. Multiple portraits are produced and their inevitable variation and/or repetition examines the very nature of our unstable existence. Do we exist only in the perception of others? If so, the representation of the artist through the multiplicity of views seems to suggest the notion that "we are not one but many". At the same time, this project is a "random survey" of the creative powers possessed by people in different locations.