Living Sculpture and Time-based Installation
Ceramics, Algae, Glass Tank, Water and Lights
The title of the work 'Green City' is a tongue-in-cheek reference to the internationally-known nickname of our island nation, which we pride ourselves for being an 'ecologically-woke' city-state in our urban planning and nature conservation efforts.
Though playful in its approach, the work deals with the heavy and considerably serious issues of climate change. The installation was conceived as an imagination of our landscape in the future, after the sea levels have risen due to global warming. The work takes the moniker and subverts the very aspect we are celebrated for (being 'green') by reintepreting it's form and expression.
The clay sculpture of Singapore was immersed in water under sunlight for a month prior to the exhibition, allowing algae to grow and cover the surface of the work. This was then displayed in glass tank under artificial lighting during the show, creating the aesthetic of a city under survillance in an artificial, almost laboratory/aquarium-like setting (an allusion to the artificial and top-down approach in which 'green' urban planning and nature conservation efforts are enacted locally.)
The city still teems with life and 'greenery' - but this time not with artifically planted rain trees and humans.
Nature will still go on nevertheless, without us.
This work is also part of a broader strand of Jireh's explorations into vibrant materiality and ephemerality, in which he creates 'living art', resisting the underlying desire in art objects to eternalise a moment/idea in time, defying archival conventions of permanence.
Due to the nature of the medium, collectors are reminded that these works live and transform slowly through the the course of time, requiring constant upkeep and care.
Documentation and Process