|The two buildings are joined together with a canopy|
|Wu's dynamic painting of the Great Wall|
We went during a weekday and it was quite quiet, so staff were very helpful and friendly with any inquiries we had. We went through practically the entire thing, which is quite a lot to cover, but when it's hot outside, it's a nice respite.
One of the special exhibitions is the late artist Wu Guanzhong, who donated a number of works to the National Collection, similar to him gifting several pieces to Hong Kong. Here, the show, entitled "Wu Guanzhong: Beauty Beyond Form", shows his early works, small realism paintings in oil, then his move to ink painting that soon became more abstract in nature.
Another show is "Chua Ek Kay: After the Rain", where the Singaporean artist was born in Guangdong but settled in Singapore. He did some fantastic large ink paintings that are so evocative and contemporary. As he traveled extensively, he realized he needed to create new art forms to express what he saw in places like Australia.
|Beautiful wood ceiling detail in the former Supreme Court|
I don't know many Singaporean artists, and so it was interesting to see a few, such as Georgette Chen who migrated there, capturing everyday life in the city. An interesting piece of trivia is that on the back of the 50 dollar bill is the work of artist Cheong Soo Pieng called Drying Salted Fish, and the original work can be seen in the gallery.
A special exhibition on until July 17 is "Reframing Modernism: Painting from Southeast Asia, Europe and Beyond". Co-organized by the National Gallery and the Centre Pompidou, it's an interesting exploration of 20th century art, seeing the similarities of what was going on with Pablo Picasso, Vassily Kandinsky as well as Vietnamese and Brazilian artists at the same time.
|Our attempt to sketch works in the Modernism exhibition|
The space in the Supreme Court was a bit odd to house works of art, and seemed more like it should be a museum dedicated to the judiciary than a gallery. That's because the chairs for judges and the dock for the accused were still in their original places, while art was added on the walls. Some of the rooms were quite small too, making it hard to put the works together in a logical fashion.
|Xu Beihong's Put Down Your Whip|
The gallery is smart to have a bar up there called Aura Sky Lounge, where visitors can take in the view and enjoy a drink and snack.
National Gallery of Singapore
1 St. Andrew's Road
Tel: +65 6690 9400