Think Arab Street, Haji Lane, and the surrounding area and images of graffitied walls, hipster cafes, and quaint shops will likely come to mind.
Instead of casually passing through on your weekend cafe visit, why not take the chance to immerse yourself in the vibrant art scene there, via the AliWALL Festival 2022?
From 21-23 Jan, the Aliwal Arts Centre (AAC) will have an array of experiential and visual activities for the quiet art appreciator and keen enthusiast alike.
Through its main theme “The Dreamer”, the festival aims to unite artists and represent the evolution of the urban art scene in our little red dot.
Here are some of the activities you can look forward to.
You and your besties have probably passed by the colourful walls around Kampong Gelam and taken countless pictures with them as your background on many occasions.
Beyond the aesthetics, these works of art carry their own stories which most of us may never know. To appreciate them in a whole new light, the D’Tour lets you join a walking tour of the vicinity, courtesy of street art collective RSCLS.
Admire the street art you’ve seen around Bugis in a whole new light as you listen to RSCLS guides and the artists themselves share the stories behind these massive masterpieces.
Due to massive demand, the D’Tour is fully sold out, but getting on the waitlist is still possible. Registration is free, so there’s no harm submitting your details in case any slots free up at the last minute.
Interested participants who are hearing-impaired can sign up for the tour on Sunday, 23 Jan, where Singapore Sign Language (SgSL) interpreting services will be available.
Things get more exciting at Reality in Construction, a participative outdoor mural that lets you try your hand at street art.
Under the guidance of artists like Has.J, Kristal Melson, Slacsatu, as well as Spaz and TraseOne from RSCLS, you can leave your own mark on the large wall on the right side of the AAC building.
Image courtesy of Arts House Limited
For budding artists, this golden opportunity will feel like a dream come true. As lines blur between reality and fantasy, you can experience this very theme come to life at The Courtyard, which offers strange yet exhilarating experiences.
From a larger-than-life inflatable sculpture bursting out of the indoor spaces into AAC’s courtyard to an augmented reality (AR) filter that you can activate using your smartphone, exploring The Courtyard will be like a fantastical adventure worthy of a Tim Burton movie.
Between 11am and 9pm on 22 Jan, art market Saturday’s Plan will open up there too, where you can snag exclusive prints, zines, stickers, and flash tattoos as souvenirs of your time at AliWALL Festival 2022: The Dreamer.
As exciting as tech and AR may be, nothing beats the thrill of watching live shows, which Permission To Dream offers.
Featuring a combination of multi-sensory experiences with fantasy-filled digital art, set designs, and sound, the uplifting performances will transport viewers to a different realm.
Expect improvisational, roving performances and dreamy productions featuring deaf dancer-choreographer Ammar Ameezy.
Be blown away by the performers’ intricate movements amidst captivating stage setups that’ll leave you absolutely mesmerised.
Even if you can’t be in the vicinity over the festival weekend, AliWALL Festival has online spaces for you to be part of the event no matter where you are.
Street Art and Murals: Beyond Framed Narratives and Cliches on 22 Jan lets you watch mural artists discuss artworks from Singapore and other places on Facebook.
Be drawn into their world as they speak passionately about the art form they’ve dedicated themselves to, and you might just surprise yourself with the knowledge you’ll glean from their discussions.
If you’d like to actively contribute to an online event space, Mixtape v2.0 is a simple yet creative way for you to participate.
Essentially a Spotify playlist accompanying a mural on the side of AAC, Mixtape v2.0 currently comprises 27 songs that capture the spirit of Kampong Gelam.
Like a modern-day mixtape in digital form, you can contribute songs that encapsulate what Kampong Gelam means to you to the playlist over the festival weekend.
Simply create an Instagram story or post of your contribution with the hashtag #AliWALL2022 and tag @rscls and @aliwalartscentre by 23 Jan 2022. The 5 wackiest entries will have a chance to win special merchandise from RSCLS.
AliWALL Festival 2022: The Dreamer will run from Friday, 21 Jan to Sunday, 23 Jan, as part of the 2022 edition of the Singapore Art Week (SAW).
The entire event is free with registration via Eventbrite, so don’t hesitate to sign up while you still can. Note that each slot is 45 minutes and you can arrive anytime during your registered time slot. Vaccination-differentiated safe management measures (VDS) apply.
Here’s how you can get to the AliWALL Festival 2022 @ AAC:
Address: Level 1, Aliwal Arts Centre: Outdoor Sidewall, Music Studio & Courtyard
Date: 21 to 23 Jan 2022
Opening hours: 6-9pm on 21 January 2022
11am- 9pm on 22 & 23 Jan 2022
Nearest MRT: Nicoll Highway Station
Art enthusiasts will be happy to learn that limited-edition merchandise will be up for grabs during the Festival, including sticker packs, pins, and tote bags.
You can visit the AliWALL Festival 2022: The Dreamer website here for more details about the event.
With this large line-up of interactive events, art enthusiasts should jio their friends and immerse themselves in the Singapore urban art scene.
Here’s to hoping you’ll have a fun-filled weekend mural painting and trying your hand at graffiti.
Maybe the next time you sip a cappuccino at a nearby cafe, you can look at the street art around you with greater fondness and appreciation.
This post was brought to you in collaboration with Arts House Limited.
All images courtesy of Arts House Limited.
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