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Holding on to the previous in bins, Arts News & Top Stories

Ask Dutch artist Iskander Walen why he has determined to showcase artworks in bins for his newest solo exhibition and he says, with amusing, that he has no thought.

“I don’t know why I am so fascinated with boxes. I think it is the air of mystery,” he says.

“We all have our boxes at home, hidden away from view in cupboards and storage spaces, and hidden in those boxes are our past lives.”

Boxed Up, introduced by Orange Gallery Singapore, will characteristic about 15 works and run on the Goodman Arts Centre till Sunday.

One of the works on show is And Then There Were Four, a field containing a solid of Walen’s spouse’s torso when she was eight months pregnant with their second son.

There can be Goodbye, piled with a decade’s price of “special knick-knacks” from the 44-year-old artist’s life: a film ticket stub, digicam viewfinder, hen’s cranium and different ephemera.

“A box is something we use to hold on to something that is not part of our lives anymore. Everyone has a box with pictures of old lovers,” says Walen.


  • WHERE: Goodman Arts Centre, 90 Goodman Road, Block O

    WHEN: From 7pm immediately until Sunday, 11am to 6pm day by day. The artist will give a chat at 8pm immediately


    INFO: Go to

A field is one thing we use to carry on to one thing that isn’t a part of our lives anymore… I feel I put some works in bins as a result of that means, it looks like I’ll hold them without end, that they may by no means be lost.

DUTCH ARTIST ISKANDER WALEN (above) on why he determined to showcase artworks in bins for his exhibition, Boxed Up

“I think I put some works in boxes because that way, it feels like I will keep them forever, that they will never be lost.”


Boxes are like time capsules, however may make viewers “more involved” in what they’re since they have to make an effort to see inside.

He says these bins can function “a little safety barrier” between the viewer and probably provocative items of labor such because the tongue-in-cheek I Love You For Your Mind, a solid of a girl’s buttocks formed like a coronary heart.

And on a extra sensible degree, the bins assist conceal the much less engaging elements of a piece .

Asked if he was impressed by Joseph Cornell, the American artist well-known for arranging bric-a-brac, trinkets and different found components in bins, and the identify doesn’t register.

Cornell’s affect, nonetheless, might have been extra circuitous.

Walen says that one among his influences for the “boxed-up” creative idea was Canadian-American author William Gibson, whose science-fiction novel Count Zero (1986) options Cornell-like constructions by a mechanical box-maker.

Walen describes Boxed Up as an “exhibition in progress”.

This implies that response from the general public might nicely inform future works or immediate him to switch these which might be on show.

He provides: “Often, I am not 100 per cent happy. If I still have the work, I go back and do something to it.”

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