After Utopia

After Utopia

Singapore Art Museum

After Utopia: Revisiting the Ideal in Asian Contemporary Art 

In naming his fictional island ‘Utopia’, writer Thomas More conjoined the Greek words for ‘good place’ and ‘no place’ – a reminder that the idealised society he conjured was fundamentally phantasmal. And yet, the search and yearning for Utopia is a ceaseless humanist endeavor. Predicated on possibility and hope, utopian principles and models of worlds better than our own have been perpetually re-imagined, and through the centuries, continue to haunt our consciousness.

Drawing largely from Singapore Art Museum’s collection, as well as artists’ collections and new commissions, After Utopia seeks to ask where have we located our Utopias, and how we have tried to bring into being the utopias we have aspired to. By turns, these manifestations serve as mirrors to both our innermost yearnings as well as to our contemporary realities – that gnawing sense that this world is not enough.

View this exhibition on Google Arts & Culture.

artists & artworks

Chris Chong Chan Fui
Block B (2012 – 2014)

Kawayan de Guia
Bomba (2011)

Gao Lei
Cabinet (2008)

Geraldine Javier
Ella Amo’ Apasionadamente y Fue Correspondida (For She Loved Fiercely, and She is Well-Loved) (2010)

Anurendra Jegadeva
MA‐NA‐VA‐REH – Love, Loss and Pre‐Nuptials in the Time of the Big Debate (2012 – 2014)

Jitish Kallat
Annexation (2009)

Shannon Lee Castleman
Jurong West Sttreet 81 (2008)

Kamin Lertchaiprasert
Sitting (2004)

Pandora’s Box (2013, 2015)

Donna Ong
The Forest Speaks Back (I) (2014)
Letters From The Forest (2015)

Svay Sareth
Mon Boulet (2011)

Shen Shaomin
Summit (2009)

Yudi Sulistyo
Mewujudkan Angan (Realizing Dreams) (2010 – 2011)

Agus Suwage & Davy Linggar
Pinkswing Park (2005, 2012)

Tang Da Wu
Sembawang (2013)
Sembawang Phoenix (2013)

Propeller Group, The (Tuan Andrew Nguyen, Phunam Thuc Ha and Matthew Charles Lucero)
Television Commercial for Communism (2011 – 2012)

Made Wianta
Air Pollution (2014)

Ian Woo
We Have Crossed the Lake (2009)

view online exhibit
virtual exhibition tour



kawayan de guia

year: 2011

installation comprising of 18 mirror bombs, ‘sputnik’ sound sculpture


kamin lertchaiprasert

year: 2004

installation with 366 carved wooden sculptures


shen shaomin

year: 2009

silica gel simulation, acrylic and fabric