Tuesday, August 06, 2013

The launch of "Hands: Gift of a Generation" exhibition, 6 Aug 2013

Several of my colleagues at the National Library have been hard at work for the past few months, working towards this exhibition. The appointed exhibition vendor started the onsite set up slightly more than a week ago. It all came together for today's official launch (6 Aug 2013) of the "Hands: Gift of a Generation" exhibition.

IMG_5722 Hands exhibtion

IMG_5723 hands exhibition IMG_5694 launch

The two old couple were guests. I was told each was over 100 years old. The woman was featured in the exhibition's Gallery. More about her later.
IMG_5685 registration

IMG_5711 launch

The Gallery
There were 30 Singaporeans specially interviewed for the Gallery. Having lived through the nation-building years (generally taken as 1965 to 1970s), their individual memories had the touch of familiarity and distance all combined. My colleagues did a nice job shortlisting the interviewees. A few interviewees have achieved national fame at some point. But most are ordinary folks, in the sense they could have been our parents or grandparents. Or you and I. 
IMG_5686 the gallery IMG_5703 gallery IMG_5689 Hands Exhibition IMG_5706 gallery IMG_5697

Here's the old couple I mentioned at the start of the post. The old woman was Madam Lim Beak. With her was her husband. I was told both were Centenarians. They looked amazingly fit for their age.
IMG_5701 lim beak IMG_5700 lim beak

Reading her story, I learned that both Madam Lim and her husband were natives of Fujian, China. Madam Lim was born in 1908 and came to Singapore when she was 34 years old (around 1942). Her husband had come to Singapore years earlier, in 1939, to escape conscription (into the Nationalist army, I suppose). It was fascinating to read how she and her husband went about making a living in those early days in Singapore. Sounded like tough times. 
IMG_5751 lim beak

More of her story will appear in the papers soon, I think. She was interviewed by journalists who were at  the launch.

The Remembering Room
This was the central structure of the whole exhibit. If you have contributed your stories to SingaporeMemory.Sg, you might find yours being projected on the wall.
IMG_5707  remembering room

Visitors could tap on the lightbox interfaces to search and browse memories, drawn from what has been contributed to the Singapore Memory Project so far.
IMG_5692 remembering room IMG_5691 the remembering room

IMG_5693 remembering room

The Memory Table
IMG_5699 memory table IMG_5698 memory table

That was the area where you write your memories down (on a sheet provided), then walk over to the scanner to digitise the sheet. The scanner was activated by placing your hand over the surface.
IMG_5725 memory table

The Memory Recorder
For those who wish to contribute their memories via video or audio, check out the Memory Recorder. It's an enclosed space where you can record yourself or interview a friend.
IMG_5687 the memory recorder IMG_5702 memory recorder

The Memory Pool
IMG_5743 memory pool

This part was designed with the kids in mind. On the walls were mobile phone-sized touchscreens, where visitors could digitally pen or sketch something. Submitting the memory was a matter of covering up the touchscreen with your hand.
IMG_5714  the memory pool IMG_5696 the memory pool

Then the 'memories' will appear in the 'light pool'. You could try scooping up whatever that has been submitted with your hands to take a closer look.
IMG_5716  the memory pool IMG_5695  the memory pool

Mementos for guests
Guests received a programme brochure and also a special edition Kalkitos game.
IMG_5708 launch IMG_5709 launch IMG_5710 launch

IMG_5732 launch

IMG_5705 launch

The exhibition, organised by the Singapore Memory Project, would be open to the public on 7 Aug. It would be on till 13 Aug 2013 at The Plaza, National Library building. There would also be programmes organised in conjunction with the exhibition.

IMG_5738 Hands Exhibition

IMG_5688 main Hands

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