Before its recent aspirations to become a design city, Singapore’s intellectual property system was relatively undeveloped like many developing nations, allowing piracy to thrive. Don’t be Silly! is a 4-page insert examining a 1982 legal case between two manufacturers of polypropylene chairs — the British Hille International and the local Tiong Hin Engineering — and the role of language in piracy.
This was specially created for the Singapore Art Book Fair 2016, and it builds upon the Design Piracy Institute project I launched at D-Crit as part of my MFA thesis. Risograph printers Push—Press were commissioned to print a special edition of my thesis with this insert. Limited copies are still available for sale and shipping is free worldwide.
Shannon Lim hated studying until he discovered design
If not for design, Shannon Lim may still be bumming around in life. He never did his homework in school and spent his time skateboarding instead, until he set his mind on becoming a photographer. But in order to get into one of Singapore’s top design schools where photography is also taught, Lim realized he needed good grades.
“It was an epiphany,” he recalls. “I really was a very bad student. I would sleep in class the whole day. For my chemistry paper, I wrote ‘bunsen burner’ for all the questions.” Even though it was a struggle to pass his exams, Lim did well enough to study photography at Temasek Design School. That was when he made his second epiphany in life: that he wanted to be a graphic designer instead.
Cheaper, faster, and a new aesthetic — this is what Risograph printers can offer to the local creative scene, says two new presses offering this technology in Singapore.
This year, Push—Press as well as Knuckles & Notch launched separately to offer printing services based on this Japanese invention. Both press founders discovered Risograph printers in the West, where it has become popular amongst designers and artists, and wanted to introduce this tool to Singapore.
While this printing technology has been around since 1980, it has mainly been used inside schools and churches as a cost-efficient high-volume printer for documents of just one or two colours. In recent years, however, graphic designers and artists have caught on to this technology, introducing them into design studios as well as setting up independent presses. Both Push—Press and Knuckles & Notch claim to be pioneers in offering Risograph printing as a service in Singapore.