Day 2 at M1 Singapore Fringe Festival 2017

It’s been very busy couple of days taking part in the terrific Art & Skin themed festival here in Singapore. I’ve found some time to write about the adventure so far!

The first full day kicked off meeting journalists from Channel Asia News who accompanied me on my first journeys on the MRT train routes in Singapore.

I began creating the 1 minute #CompulsiveCharcoal drawings on the copies of the free Today paper, as well as The Straits Times, and giving them to passengers in my vicinity. It’s always an interesting moment starting to draw in public for the first time. And although I am very used to reading the body language of passengers engaging and watching me draw, there was definitely a little anxiety of how this would be received in Singapore. There are strict laws on littering here and I would not be able to leave drawings to be discovered or encountered, as I do in London. I had been advised to ensure I was gifting the drawings directly. I was really happy that smiles, eye contact and conversations began to happen, and I was able to successfully give away about 10 drawings. 

I’ve also been distributing the accompanying postcard to people near me, just as I do in London which explains how drawings is a tool to stop my #CompulsiveSkinPicking. It encourages people to share the drawing on social media but thus far no one has joined in! We will see how that goes over the duration of the trip. 

Here are a range of drawings from those initial excursions…

After the interview for Channel Asia, we made our way to Lasalle College of the Arts, an incredible building that looks like something out of Star Wars! Wow!

I was there to give the first of a series of illustrated talks on Compulsive Skin Picking and my art practice. The session was for 30 students on the MA Art Therapy course. 

After a Q&A I also led a 2 hour Body Portrait workshop for the students, inviting them to experience a personal and reflective activity based on their own bodies and skins. These life-size portraits were hugely expressive and powerful and lined the walls and windows of the room…

One of the members of staff from the Art Therapy team emailed me afterwards, saying 

“Thank-you very much for conducting the 3-hr workshop today. We learned heaps and our students have enhanced their learning and understanding on the processes of harnessing the power of of art-making for healing on a deeper level.”

The day ended with the opening reception for the M1 Singapore Fringe Festival at the incredible Esplanade Theatre with a spectacular view across the city.

Sean Tobin, the M1 Singapore Fringe Festival Director warmly welcomed all the artists and sponsors, and I was able to meet and thank the team at the British Council Singapore for supporting my trip.

The drinks reception was followed by some fabulously naughty burlesque with a performance of Sin in Skin which was utterly brilliant! Glad I wore some sequins… here’s a jetlagged selfie at the end of a fantastic first day!


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