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The exhibition is a major survey of visionary Korean artist Nam June Paik, who in many ways anticipated the Internet.

Nam June Paik Mega Exhibition Arrives at National Gallery Singapore

Nam June Paik, TV Garden (1974–7. Reconstructed in 2002.) Live plants, cathode-ray tube televisions, and video, colour, sound. Collection of Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Düsseldorf. Installation view at the National Gallery Singapore.

After stints at London's Tate Modern, Amsterdam's Stedelijk Museum, and San Francisco's Museum of Modern Art, Nam June Paik: The Future is Now opens at the National Gallery Singapore (NGS) on 10 December.

The landmark exhibition, which continues through 27 March 2022, features over 180 works in different media, including a number of Nam June Paik's trademark television screen sculptures.

Nam June Paik, One Candle, also known as Candle TV (2004). Cathode ray tube television casing with additions in permanent oil marker, acrylic paint and live candle. Lent by the Estate of Nam June Paik. Installation view at the National Gallery Singapore.

Nam June Paik, One Candle, also known as Candle TV (2004). Cathode ray tube television casing with additions in permanent oil marker, acrylic paint and live candle. Lent by the Estate of Nam June Paik. Installation view at the National Gallery Singapore.

Paik, who was born in Seoul in 1932 and died in 2006, began exploring the artistic possibilities of video as early as the 1960s. Fascinated with the future, he coined the phrase 'the electronic superhighway' to describe the instant transfer of information we now take for granted.

'Beyond illuminating Paik's artistic legacy that impacted visual culture and generations of artists today, Nam June Paik: The Future Is Now also compels visitors to reflect on their own relationship with technology, as well as its effects and repercussions on society,' said Dr Eugene Tan, Director of NGS.

Nam June Paik, TV Buddha (1974). Closed-circuit video installation with wooden sculpture, monitor and video camera, video, single channel, 4:3 format, live feed. Collection of Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam. Installation view at National Gallery Singapore.

Nam June Paik, TV Buddha (1974). Closed-circuit video installation with wooden sculpture, monitor and video camera, video, single channel, 4:3 format, live feed. Collection of Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam. Installation view at National Gallery Singapore. Courtesy of the Estate of Nam June Paik; ©️ Estate of Nam June Paik.

The exhibition also explores Paik's collaborations with fellow avant-gardists such as Fluxus founder George Maciunas, artist Joseph Beuys, and musicians John Cage and David Bowie. One of the exhibition's 11 sections is devoted entirely to Paik's 30-year collaboration with cellist Charlotte Moorman, who performed in different stages of undress.

Singapore is the last stop on the exhibition's tour and its only stop in Asia. A section exclusive to the NGS exhibition entitled 'Paik on Asia' investigates the artist's interest in East Asian philosophy through works such as TV Buddha (1974), an 18th century wooden Buddha that, long before YouTube, Twitch or TikTok, watches itself on TV. —[O]

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