This May the world's largest exhibition of sculpture from the Asia Pacific will be held in Singapore. This three-month event, called Volume & Form, will involve 150 artists from 20 countries, and will be part of the Republic's Millennia Mania celebrations.
The exhibition, organised by the Andres Contemporary Art gallery, aims to put Singapore on the international arts calendar and establish it as a global city for the arts. It will take place in several locations, with the "trail" starting from the Botanic Gardens, leading through the Orchard Road area to Fort Canning and on to Far East Square, the main exhibition venue.
More than 200 sculptures will be displayed. The tallest will be two-and-a-half storeys high, and there will also be works in plastic, glass and even miniature pieces in gold, silver and stone. Works by internationally acclaimed sculptor, Chris Booth of New Zealand, will also be exhibited.
Viewers are free to touch the pieces, as most of them will not be roped off. Jonathan Benavides, the director of Andres Contemporary Art, explains, "Sculpture is about touch. When people touch and feel the sculptures and see them from different angles, then a completely new world is opened to them."
All 150 participating artists will visit Singapore to give talks. Lectures and seminars by experienced academicians and sculptors will also be held.
The idea for the exhibition started with the encouragement and support from the Singapore Tourism Board, which is holding the MillenniaMania celebrations to welcome the next century. "We want people to see art as a part of the city that is directing itself towards the next century," explains Mr Benavides.
On the Asia Pacific focus, Mr Benavides says, "There's a need for it. Some years ago, people were collecting mainly American and European art. But in the last year or so, people have started discovering things from the Asia Pacific region."