New Keppel Centre for Art Education to Nurture Creative Thinkers
A new immersive learning facility at the National Gallery Singapore will soon open to give young visitors more reasons to cultivate their interest in art. More than 60 children today trialled the Keppel Centre for Art Education’s line-up of innovative programmes designed to make learning art enjoyable and accessible. The activities will form the core of the purpose-built Centre, where families can extend their art journey from the gallery spaces into another seamless world of interactive, hands-on art exploration.
The Keppel Centre for Art Education will be the first of its kind in the region to provide young visitors the opportunity to access original artwork, handle art tools, select artworks, write labels and conduct exhibition tours for their peers through experiential learning and role-play in masterclasses led by artists and educators. Through this unique visitor experience and other art-making and active learning programmes, the Gallery hopes to encourage curiosity, imagination and thoughtfulness among young audiences, ultimately enriching art education in Singapore and enabling more visitors from all walks of life to appreciate art.
“Learning and creating access to art for a broader audience has always been, and continues to be, a priority for the Gallery. We want to encourage children to use their imagination, think critically, solve problems creatively, innovate, collaborate, and communicate. These are important skillsets for the 21st century. With the Keppel Centre for Art Education, we want to inspire new perspectives and to allow visitors to draw important links between art and their daily lives, by providing a multi-sensory creative learning experience for families and students of all ages visiting the Centre,” said Ms Suenne Tan, Director, Education and Programmes, National Gallery Singapore.
Keppel Corporation, a founding partner of the Gallery, expressed confidence that the Keppel Centre for Art Education will be a rich, educational resource for cultivating creative and critical thinkers. Ms. Wang Look Fung, Director of Group Corporate Affairs, Keppel Corporation, shared, “At Keppel, we adopt a long term view to nurturing communities. A vibrant arts scene connects people and strengthens our national identity. Through our support of the Gallery, and in particular, the Keppel Centre for Art Education, we promote the exchange of ideas and foster creativity and expression. We are pleased to be able to contribute towards the Centre, and look forward to seeing children, youth and families benefit from its immersive and artistic learning environment.”
Based on the three board principles of Learning about Art, Learning from Art and Learning through Art, the Keppel Centre for Art Education will feature art commissions that are purposefully designed to stimulate the imagination of younger audiences, based on the belief that every person is born creative:
- Art Corridor – Young children will be invited to touch, explore and change the look of artworks through interacting with moveable elements. Highly tactile and visually impactful, the Art Corridor provides a unique interactive art experience that may be enjoyed not only by very young visitors, but by visitors of all ages.
- Art Playscape – Inspired by the idea of "entering a painting", Art Playscape develops curiosity and imagination through active play, movement and discovery for young visitors. Through different adventure trails, visitors uncover hidden stories. Mysteries, unexpected surprises and fantastical characters await the most curious visitor.
- Project Gallery – Designed as an immersive and contemplative environment, the Project Gallery invites visitors to use art to imagine creative solutions to real world issues. Visitors can also display their art pieces in the Project Gallery as part of the collaborative learning process that connects their creative ideas with the artist’s artworks.
- Children’s Museum – Visitors to the Children’s Museum will gain insight into the creative process of different artists in an environment inspired by their respective studios. Through experiential learning and role-play, young visitors will learn to select artworks, write labels and conduct exhibition tours for their peers.
For the inaugural 2015 to 2016 instalment, the Gallery collaborated with four artists to develop thought-provoking interpretations of Homes. Each of the artists – Twardzik Ching Chor Leng, Sandra Lee, Milenko Prvacki and Tan Wee Lit – designed diverse and imaginative presentations that will inspire visitors to take an active interest in art and make connections between art and everyday life. Each presentation is supported by education programmes developed by the Gallery, for families and children of all ages.
In conjunction with the 2015 to 2016 theme of Homes, the Keppel Centre for Art Education will also feature works by two artists – world-renowned British artist and autistic savant Stephen Wiltshire and 13-year-old Singaporean Xandyr Quek – as part of the Centre’s special display programme. Both artists embarked on separate journeys to render the Singapore landscape using their unique talents. The result is two spectacular renditions of Singapore’s terrain – a panoramic cityscape of Singapore, as well as the landscape of Woodlands recreated with clay, plasticine and sticky foam.
The Keppel Centre for Art Education will present an annual change of installations and feature a series of adult- and family-friendly programmes, such as daily tours, workshops, lectures, forums, family weekends and community days to give visitors more reasons to return to the Gallery.
The Keppel Centre for Art Education is slated to open together with the Gallery on 24 November this year. Located on the ground floor of the City Hall Wing, the Centre is easily accessible to schools and families with young children. Admission to the Centre is free.