Singapore, November 2016 - ShanghART Singapore is pleased to announce an inaugural solo show by acclaimed photography duo Birdhead at ShanghART Gallery Singapore. “Welcome to Birdhead World Again” features new works commissioned and mounted specially for the exhibition and opens on Friday December 9, 2016 with the artists in attendance. The exhibition runs through 22 January 2017.
Birdhead’s unique documentary approach entails lensing a huge volume of photographs that capture a broad range of subjects, including diaristic snapshots of their daily lives, activities, and travels. These photographs are processed, arranged, and mounted to comprise each eponymous “Birdhead World.” Presented as matrices, tiled in large arrays, or assembled into collages of new and traditional images and poetry, each bricolage is driven by a distinctive Birdhead semiotic.
For this new series of work, Birdhead expand their proverbial and ever-growing “Birdhead World” to Southeast Asia, drawing inspiration from the landscapes, places and people encountered during travels in Thailand, Myanmar, Laos, Vietnam, and Singapore. Turning their lens toward Southeast Asia for the first time, their photographs showcase these foreign landscapes and subjects as they are encountered by Song Tao and Ji Weiyu in real time. Yet, as much as Birdhead’s works attest to foreign landscapes and countries traversed, this is the document of an interior journey; a form of exploration of self. The final works are results not only of geography, but also of the reflection, introspection and absorption of these experiences and images into “Birdhead World.”
In addition, Birdhead have also created a performance art collaboration with filmmaker-turned-chef Chayuti Janrakangtong (Papacurry) from Chiang Mai, one of the friends Song Tao met on his travels. This program will take place in January 2017 in conjunction with Singapore Art Week 2017.
This exhibition is the result of the first in a series of Southeast Asia residencies made possible by ShanghART with the support of the National Arts Council (NAC) and the Economic Development Board of Singapore (EDB), exploring the potential of Singapore as a site for artistic practice and inspiration, in addition to its status as a hub for art exhibition and business.
Birdhead have been working in the medium of analog photography since they were established in 2004. Consisting of duo Song Tao (b. 1979) and Ji Weiyu (b. 1980), their aleatoric moniker was borne of a computer prompt. The prolific duo has since assembled a huge body of work, taking around 15,000 photographs a year and constantly experimenting with analog photography, collage techniques, and other mixed media. Birdhead have been exhibited in museums and galleries all over the world. Their works are in the permanent collections of the Tate Modern in London, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and the Guy & Myriam Ullens Foundation in Switzerland. Birdhead were also nominated for the inaugural Hugo Boss Asia Art Award in 2013. ShanghART presented Birdhead’s first solo exhibition in 2005.
About ShanghART Singapore
Established in Singapore in 2012, ShanghART Singapore is ShanghART Gallery’s first overseas gallery located in contemporary arts cluster Gillman Barracks.
Press release courtesy ShanghART.