This month, we’re excited to share with you that we’re collaborating with the good folks from SGIFF! This is an exciting partnership for us as they are the trailblazers of Singapore’s film industry and they’ve given a platform to so many local filmmakers.
We chatted with the Executive Director of SGIFF Yuni Hadi about this year’s festivals. We asked her about what’s different about this year's edition:
“We believe in that takeaway experience and there will be many opportunities to meet the filmmakers in person for post-film dialogue sessions with the over 90 films we are showing.
Free Film Screenings @ Naiise Iconic
Yes, you heard it right! Our Workshop area (located on the second level) will be transformed into a cosy den where you and your friends can come on down, chill out to a screening of films like award-winning My Father After Dinner, The Pursuit of a Happy Human Life and Still is Time by filmmaker Gladys Ng.
What to expect at the Creative Session!
The collaboration doesn’t stop there! We’re also fortunate to have two special artists come on board for our November Creative Sessions! We’ve got Gladys Ng herself taking centre stage with visual artist Mary Bernadette Lee, in collaboration with SGIFF, to host the creative session titled ‘&’.
You will be pairing up and will be given a Canon INSPiC camera to go around Jewel and take some photographs. When all pairs come back together, Mary & Gladys will lead everyone in a guided discussion and you'll get to exchange your photographs with your partner.
What happens next is you're free to make illustrations and modifications on the photographs to create a collage. With the new layers and dimensions, they hope to further your encounter with your partner and you end up with a new acquaintance!
Meet the Artists
Gladys Ng, Filmmaker
1. What made you pursue film making?
At the age of 16, I made a haphazard decision to enrol into film school (Film, Sound & Video, Ngee Ann Polytechnic), and that was it - there is no turning back now!
2. What makes a film great for you? Are there certain qualities that make a film better for you?
When a film resonates with you, it just does. Sometimes I find it hard to explain to friends why I like a certain film or why another doesn’t work. There isn’t any specific quality that can be listed, to be honest.
I remember going to the cinema to watch Hayao Miyazaki’s Spirited Away when it first came out. The plot is easy to follow, but back then, I didn’t quite understand what the film was trying to say, like you know, the thematic meaning, but I remember very vividly leaving the cinema feeling touched and somewhat with a sense of tranquillity and spirituality. It’s a feeling that words can’t describe and for days after, a part of me was still living in that world.
So perhaps, the reason why I’m drawn to film is because, momentarily, you are fully immersed in an entirely different world. Film is a language. It speaks for itself. Sometimes there’s no better way to describe a film than to experience it for yourself.
3. What do you love about the creative process?
My favourite part of the creative process is actually working with people, which is an irony because normally, if given a choice, I like to spend time alone.
But there are times when I appreciate being with people, like with Wei Ting, a long-time collaborator and friend, who had edited all the films that will be shown at Naiise Iconic (My Father After Dinner, The Pursuit of a Happy Human Life and Still Is Time). With each film, we’ve grown closer and developed a common vocabulary and language to communicate with each other. Of course, there are times when we’re faced with seemingly endless obstacles but when we finally plough through them, there’s a sense of satisfaction and camaraderie that comes only when you’ve worked very very hard. While I normally like to be alone, sharing little triumphs like these with friends makes it all the more special and precious.
Another dear friend and collaborator is Kang Wei, who shot Still Is Time. And many times in art-making, when it comes down to collaboration, there’s a lot of trust that needs to given. And only in a trusting and safe environment do people share great ideas. And I trust that we have a lot of that.
So with each film, I’m building a little community collaborators/friends/ work fam. Ultimately, I do like being in a team. The bigger the problem, the harder we work together, the sweeter beer will taste after. Isn’t that wonderful?
Likewise, on this project with Mary, we’re slowly getting to know each other better. And I have so much respect and admiration for her work and what she does!
Mary Bernadette Lee, Visual Artist & Illustrator
1. Could you share with us the story of how you discovered your love for visual arts?
The “story” constantly evolves; There isn’t one story per se that I can pin point. It’s through my interaction with others that my awareness of Art’s ability to effect change in the way people see the world around them, and effectively, how it brings people together.
It’s not just the visual arts that I have an appreciation for. It is the unified entity of what Art represents and it's that keeps me grounded in my love for the Arts.
2. Do you have a certain style that you tend towards?
Not really! My style evolves consistently. I enjoy the pursuit of experimentation and how unique outcomes can be derived from this curiosity.
3. What is your proudest achievement to date?
That I haven’t given up. It’s challenging to pursue an alternative career and lifestyle here and it's an achievement to rise up to that challenge every day!
One of Mary's many proud artworks - it combines textures and illustrations
Get Your Tickets!
Come and join us on the 16th November for an hour and a half of makin’ some magic – find the details below.
Date: 16 November 2019
Time: 1 — 2:30pm
Venue: Naiise Iconic @ Jewel Changi Airport, #02-205, Singapore 819666