We are Urban Explorers.

(The unseen SG shall resurface.)

We live on a tiny island.
Our island is 90% urbanised.
Urbanisation with lots of HDBs and tall faceless blocks.
Faceless blocks but are they really faceless and boring?
Boredom breeds activism.
Activities: field exploration.
Explore the nooks & crannies between towering offices in Shenton Way, alleyways behind shophouses in Katong, minute but quirky differences between various HDB estates, underground MRT passageways which disappear into somewhere secret.
Secrets of the urban density are amongst us – territorial spaces of the rich, colonised spaces of the authorities, inaccessible spaces of the forgotten. We need to access and infiltrate these spaces.
Space is where we live in, space is what we live for, space is what affects us.
We are urban explorers.

qmark.jpg‘s seeking explorers


10 responses to “We are Urban Explorers.

  1. It’s especially true, living in a city like Singapore which is built and is continually built on tabula rasa, & not to mention it being mostly urbanised- even so, there’s still much we can unearth and discover from this supposedly clean and planned environment. 🙂
    “The unseen SG shall resurface..” hahaha…

  2. Yup we should take it one step further. Go into unchartered territory! Just like what we have seen in Invisible City, the archaeological find, or like the old “Hey Singapore” programme on TV. It was a great show!

  3. do that! haha piece together an alternative history!

    for pple interested in history i highly recommend mary turnbull’s Singapore History 1819 to 1985. she will show how resilient and independent Singapore was and never once was under “colonial suppression”. how spore invented Garden City, enlightened legislative democracy, open jail system way before England, shophouse urbanism, how straits chinese created the rigour for intellectual development ahead of China.

    singapore did not gain independence in 1965. it was Manchester before Manchester, it was Florence of the Orients.

  4. Alternative history sounds like a thesis project on its own! It’s a pity Tan Pin Pin did not really provide a fitting conclusion, or even the slightest inkling of any inclination in her film rendition. It serves only to stoke the mind, leaving us all yearning for more.

    Why do we only see flatland 2D SG? In their tabula rasa, did they manage to make a clean sweep? Why are these alternative nuances so repressed and hidden? Let them explode and fill our vacuous spaces.

  5. hmmm, actually, what sort of conclusion are you talking about?

  6. Well essentially any kind of conclusion. Whether its sad for that old photographer lady who yearns to return to Britain, or the hopeful archaeological find of pottery, or the pointless lecture of the Chinese activist, or the awkward reconciliatory tone of the Japanese reporter. Perhaps all will fade with dementia, only “remembered” on celluloid just like the rolls and spools of SEA “tribes”.

  7. Sounds like a propaganda piece.
    But certainly the degree of truth and accuracy is there.

  8. Somehow i feel that lack of conclusion or defination works for me since it is ‘memory’ and its traces (or not) we are dealing with- nothing is fixed, right or wrong, everything seems essentially open-ended and even evolving. The ‘real’ past becomes like a distant dream layered beneath our present perceptions. Maybe the stoking of our minds is enough, providing nothing too definite or defined, but something which just lingers on… ?

  9. Un-arty farty me leaving a note and vandalising the blog. =d

  10. haha, i hope you’ll be back, its for anyone really 🙂 thanks for the trace! 🙂

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