Artist Hilmi and Historian Naoko got together over numerous coffees and teas at various cafes in and around Middle Road in Singapore, to try to understand each other’s practice as artist and historian.
“The more we shared our work, the more we realised that our respective practices were strikingly similar. Before we knew it, we had already begun our journey of discovery about our ‘interweaving practices’, on how we could think about a joint creative endeavour.”
Poet Collier Nogues and artist James Jack have engaged in a series of creative conversations over the past three months. Collier composed new poems using the interactive storytelling app Twine and the VR web framework A-Frame, exploring networked, tidal, and immersive poetic forms. James created new graphite drawings on paper investigating the rhizomatic structures of mangroves interwoven with text(s) that resist land-centric colonial histories by putting sea spirits, maritime ways of life and ancestral roots back into the center. They shared these works in December 2021 with all DOCUMENT participants, from which brief discussion excerpts have been selected here along with samples of their works in progress.
"We began by talking about tidal fluctuations between Okinawa, Hong Kong and Singapore, which led us to think about our relationships to our local shorelines. Soon we found ourselves considering larger historical and political questions about access—and losing access—to the sea and land, particularly in the context of our shared affinity for demilitarization in the Pacific. The networked root systems of mangroves, with their embrace of contradictory currents, grounded our collaborative creative process."