The idea of being ‘at home with oneself’ is also important as we believe that regardless of who we are, we aim to be accepting, authentic and real with ourselves.
Comprising six teacher-artists who came to know each other through a printmaking workshop, Print-With-Me is a group determined to put their creativity across and bring their ideas to life. From their use of newspapers painted white as plinths and their efficient agreements as a group, it is clear that the collective knows what they want and communicate and compromise effectively to achieve a shared goal. Despite the presence of six differing opinions that may have hindered others, this has only served to balance each other out and strengthen their collaboration. Ong Theng Choo kindly responded to STAR on behalf of the entire group.
This interview has been edited for length and clarity.
STAR: Why did you choose home as a common icon?
Theng Choo: The idea came about when we were discussing our identity as individuals and the possible visual icons and metaphors we could use to represent us. We were in search of a visual icon we can all relate to in some way, but was also neutral enough for each of us to work on to express our individuality.
I suggested the use of the simple icon of a house, as it is commonly one of the earliest images drawn by a child. The idea of being ‘at home with oneself’ is also important as we believe that regardless of who we are, we aim to be accepting, authentic and real with ourselves.
STAR: What do you hope for your audience to take away from this work?
TC: We hope the audience can take this as an opportunity to consider who we all are as individuals. How many hats are we wearing? How many personas do we present to the world? Which reflects our true selves, and what do we value?
We hope this activity invites the audience to spend time with themselves and get into the meditative flow of making and creating, as well as contemplate what we as individuals represent and contribute to the world.
…As a group, nothing seems too crazy to try. – Print-With-Me
STAR: Would you encourage others to collaborate more often? What do you think collaboration brought to the work that an individual alone could not have provided?
TC: Yes, definitely. There’s a different energy and synergy that comes with collaboration. As a group, one needs to embrace multiple perspectives. You need to seek to understand others and at the same time be understood. It is immensely satisfying when the group is open-minded, embracing, accepting, trusting and forgiving, creating an enjoyable learning experience for all of us. While there are moments of disagreement, we are able to put forward our opinions in a neutral manner and discuss solutions to problems.
As individuals, certain ideas which seem overwhelming may not be implemented at all, but as a group, nothing seems too crazy to try. That’s fun.
Want to participate in the collective’s work? Visit us at the SOTA Art Gallery from 6 March – 15 March 2019.