Among all the installations for this year’s Singapore Biennale 2008, Rachel and I liked Blackfield the most. It is at the same time, beautiful as well as sad, beyond words. You have to go down and see it for yourself at the Old City Hall.
Here are some photos I took of the artwork:
The installation is done by Zadok Ben-David, an artist borned in Yemen, but who began his art studies in Israel in the early 1970s and who then continued at Reading University and St. Martin’s School of Art in the UK.
Blackfield is a floor-based installations of thousands of small, wispy metallic plants emanating from a rectangle of white sand. The “plants” which are etched out of metal, come from botanical drawings and are painted black on one side, while on the other, a myriad of colours is visible. The decision on which colours to use is left up to the artist’s assistant. All the plants are installed with tehe coloured side facing one end of the installation and the black facing the other.
When a visitor encounters the installation from one end, they will see either a sea of coloured or black plants. The side with colour is extraordinarily cheerful, while the black is stark, very much like a scorched landscape against an almost pure white background of fine sand. The experience of seeing the black change into colour, and vice-versa, row by row, is mesmerising.
Coming up close to the plants reveals their extremely intricate structure and patterning. As the change in colour happens as one shifts one’s point of view, the macro and micro views of the installation also presents a change in perspective.
Read the rest of my Singapore Biennale 2008 entries: