Tag: postmodernism

Everyday Modernism: Architecture and Society in Singapore

Through a lens of social and architectural histories, the book uncovers the many untold stories of the Southeast Asian city-state’s modernization, from the rise of heroic skyscrapers, such as the Pearl Bank Apartments, to the spread of utilitarian typologies like the multi-storey car park. It investigates how modernism, through both form and function, radically transformed Singapore and made its inhabitants into modern citizens. The most intensive period of such change happened in the 1960s and 1970s under the rise of a developmental state seeking to safeguard its new-found independence. However, the book also looks both earlier and later, from between the 1930s to the 1980s, to cover a wider range of histories, building types and also architectural styles, expanding from the International Style and Brutalism and into Art Deco and even a touch of Postmodernism.

➜ Read more about this book I co-authored with Chang Jiat-Hwee and Darren Soh

Barbara Glauber’s Love for “Weird” Types

From discovering type on a Letraset poster to directing typefaces as a graphic designer, Barbara Glauber has had a long and deep love affair with typography. The principal of New York-based Heavy Meta has built up an impressive portfolio of designs defined by an expressive use of typography rooted in the CalArts tradition where she graduated from in 1990. We caught up with the design educator, mom, and also co-founder of celebrity dirt website The Smoking Gun (she designed the original website for her husband Bill Bastone) for a quick interview about her latest projects, type wish list, and her upcoming Typographics talk, “Crashing Vernaculars.”

Read the rest at Typographics TypeLab

Need to organise the diversity

Of late, I have not been able to gather my thoughts and thread something deeper out of them. Maybe I miss the long train trips to school, where I could let my mind run and focus, nowadays time is just too short for me to muse. Instead, I’m going to run a short list of thoughts, after all like the director of a short film said, she liked to make short films because if it’s bad, the pain is short, the disappointment after is short and well in general, life is short, isn’t it?

The problem with news
I was just thinking about a friend who graduated in engineering and loves photography and thought she sounds like a news story because that is unusual. But on second thought, that’s not unusual anymore, in the “new” world today, values of the past become unusual again. That’s on top of trying to outdo what was new. Maybe nothing new can be created… wait, I think Jameson or Lyotard talked about it before. Darn, nothing new here.

On the same note, there is one recurring story line that I am getting bored of. Basically, homosexual repressed in a hetrosexual society, rediscovers his homosexuality and lives happily ever after. I think it’s a starting point of such identities becoming included part of society and when enough of us get bored of the theme, it’ll be nothing new.

The 4th Singapore Short Film Festival
I caught the first set of films today. I was really impressed with For a Few Marbles More, a Dutch film about a group of children fighting two bullies for their right to the playground — short, sweet and funny. The Iranian film Cyanosis, about the life of a painter was a bit slow, but how the director used the paintings as part of the story-telling process was interesting.

Finally, the three local films stood out for different reasons. Londres-London had something interesting going on conceptually but it’s delivery was stunted and I only truly appreciated it when the director explained the movie. Kichiro was lots of blood and gore and I had my eyes close for quite a bit and the director did confess that he was simply exploiting the opportunity to feature violence and I have to say kudos to that. The most curious film for the night was My Keys. I was ready to pan it because it did seem quite ridiculous, a man finds out he is locked in because he can’t find his keys then prays to Guan Yin who appears with his keys but never gives it to him and flies off with it. Moreover, it’s cast were both models from some beauty competition which I highly suspected was to allow him to get sponsorship. It was only when the director explained that he wanted to convey the feeling of being cheated to express how he felt when a good friend he lent money to ran away with it. You had to give it to him.

Brochure Collection
What is with the k e r n i n g of the Singapore Short Film Festival brochure? C a n y o u i m a g i n e r e a d i n g t h i s… Postmodern layout can sometimes be so non-functional.

I finally got hold of the 21st Singapore International Film Festival’s brochure too, the cover was not very impressive too, compared to a few years back.

My favourite brochure this time was The Substation’s “What’s On Jan – Mar”, the events are sectionalised into white boxes that allow the reader to interact and make notes on it. It would have worked even better if the boxes contained the dates and times for the events too.

Cool stuff to share
Teabag font for free! <http://www.josbuivenga.demon.nl/fertigo.html>
Hilarious intellectual stuff and really beautiful publications
Into the Wild (2007)
Inspiring movie, especially when you’re weary of life, and Sean Penn directs!
Woodneuk House
Read the historical background then see my photos of this abandoned house
Cool T-shirts and information graphics
Another nice tote bag and t-shirt site, and your purchase helps a cause