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What happens to a piece of paper after it has outlived its purpose? What else does it want to say when there is no space left?
Chinese calligraphers of old were taught never to tear or misuse any piece of writing even after it has served its purpose. Instead, all pieces of writing were burnt in a little pagoda found in every district of a city. This burning was an act of respect for the written word. Driven by this philosophy, calligrapher Malik Mazlan and poet Dave Tai explore the longevity of the written word. How far can a piece of writing go if, instead of being destroyed, it is remade into a canvas, forming the foundation of a new work?
Afterwords was a collaboration between Malik and Dave to incorporate paper-making into their respective art forms. Malik and Dave turned paper waste from drafts, past projects and personal items in their lives into new canvases. Dave handled the dry portion (cutting of paper) separately from Malik who executed the wet portion (pulping, mixing, and meshing). To avoid cross-contamination between the different raw materials, the papers were created one sheet at a time, and then fan-dried through a dry box. Haiku and calligraphy are inked on these canvases, creating a multi-layered commentary on their past works, sustainability and growth.
The exhibition consists 17 such works. This was an Artspace@SCCC exhibition on display at SCCC from October 2020 to March 2021. Artists and groups are welcome to submit proposals to SCCC at firstname.lastname@example.org. The exhibition text and content were developed by the artists. Any queries should be directed to them.
Malik Mazlan is a Malay Singaporean calligrapher whose interest in Chinese calligraphy took him throughout Asia from Tokyo to Beijing. As a young calligrapher, he aspires to use the skills and insights obtained from Chinese arts and calligraphy to reflect a multi-cultural society.
Dave is a writer who got his start in poetry by writing haiku on the streets. With a co-creative approach, he has since taken his poetry to festivals and events, creating poems on the spot, based on conversations with his subjects.
Apr 12, 2021
English and Chinese