In celebration of Singapore’s 54th year of independence and as a venue partner for the National Day Parade (NDP) at the Padang this year, National Gallery Singapore will offer free admission to all exhibitions for 14 days between 22 July–12 August 2019. Celebrations continue throughout the month of August and visitors will also enjoy 50% off admission tickets from 13–31 August. (Please refer to Annex A for the calendar). This is also in commemoration of Singapore’s Bicentennial year.

Similar to the Padang, the City Hall and Former Supreme Court that house National Gallery Singapore today, were landmarks of Singapore’s past and journey to independence and have borne witness to many pivotal events in the nation’s history. It is therefore significant for the Gallery to play its part for this special NDP—that reflects how far we have come and our common aspirations for Singapore.

Embracing wonder at the libraries

In preparation for the country’s annual celebration, the Gallery will be closed on eight select days between 27 July and 10 August 2019. Singaporeans can however look forward to participating in the Gallery’s programmes during the weekends as they will be brought out and around Singapore to the heartlands instead.

A story-telling session, titled Stories in Art: The Midas Touch, that is inspired by The Other Wall1 in the Gallery Children’s Biennale, will be held at the Central Public Library and Yishun Public Library. Children who are four years old and above can join R Chandran, founder-director of ACT 3 Theatrics, to learn of a king who turned everything into gold, including his daughter, and even be part of the story!

There will also be family art workshops hosted at the Central Public Library and Serangoon Public Library. Participants can create hanging art mobiles and explore shapes, shadows and silhouettes with moving sculptures, inspired by Every World2 and Kenangan Kunang-Kunang (Memories of Fireflies)3 at the Gallery Children’s Biennale.

Appreciate art from the comfort of your homes too

There is also a range of resources available on the Gallery website for visitors to peruse from the comforts of their homes or while on the go. For example, children can enjoy interactive and hands-on activities to learn about the art on display as part of Gallery Kids (www.nationalgallery.sg/discover-learn/gallery-kids). This includes creating their own artworks using shapes and patterns, inspired by Kim Lim’s and Rasheed Araeen’s masterpieces. Art enthusiasts can also deepen their understanding and appreciation of the artworks with the insights from curators, artists and programmers on Perspectives (www.nationalgallery.sg/blog)

New exhibition on City Hall building to open on 1 September

On 1 September, visitors can immerse themselves in pivotal moments that occurred at the City Hall building with the launch of a two-year multimedia exhibition—City Hall: If Walls Could Talk. Showcasing defining events such as the swearing-in of the nation’s first President and the unveiling of the national flag and anthem in 1959, the exhibition at the City Hall Chamber chronicles the building’s rich past, and sheds light on the nation’s progress before it transforms into National Gallery Singapore today. Alongside the multimedia showcase, visitors will be able to expand their experience beyond the Chamber’s walls through an interactive digital wall situated outside the City Hall Chamber. Offering a personalised thematic art journey comprising of artworks from long-term exhibition Siapa Nama Kamu? at the DBS Singapore Gallery, visitors stand to gain a deeper understanding of the nation’s history through an artistic lens.

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