January 2021
Singapore Art Week

Talk: Southeast Asia Through a Global Lens

18 January 2020

18 January 2020

Tent B – Talks
S.E.A. Focus, Gillman Barracks
Admits entry with a valid S.E.A. Focus ticket

2.30PM – 4.00PM

Mami Kataoka, Director, Mori Art Museum, Tokyo
Reuben Keehan, Curator, Contemporary Asian Art at Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art
Billy Tang, Senior Curator, Rockbund Art Museum, Shanghai

Moderated by Michelle Lim, Assistant Professor, NTU School of Art, Design and Media

The very term “Southeast Asia” suggests an externalised locus of understanding and navigation. The creation of the region as a geo-political entity is now mirrored in the global acceptance of art from Southeast Asia as a category in itself. This panel will examine the issues inherent in the utilisation of Southeast Asia as a framework with which to shape and comprehend contemporary art production.

About the speakers:

Mami Kataoka serves as the Deputy Director (October 2018 – present) and Chief Curator (2009 – present) for the Mori Art Museum, Tokyo; as well as President of CIMAM (International Committee for Museums and Collections of Modern Art) (2020-2022) and professor at Kyoto University of Art and Design Graduate School of Art and Design Studies. Kataoka was also Artistic Director of the 21st Biennale of Sydney (2018); Co-Artistic Director for the 9th Gwangju Biennale, South Korea (2012); and International Curator at Hayward Gallery, London (2007 – 2009). She co-curated a regional exhibition SUNSHOWER: Contemporary art from Southeast Asia from 1980s to Now (2017) and curated a thematic exhibition All about Laughter: Humor in Contemporary Art (2007), among others. 

Reuben Keehan is Curator, Contemporary Asian Art at Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art (QAGOMA), where he has been a curator for the 2018, 2015, and 2012 editions of the Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art (APT). In addition, Reuben was co-curator with Adele Tan and Russell Storer of Yayoi Kusama: Life is the Heart of a Rainbow (2017-18) at National Gallery Singapore, QAGOMA, and MACAN, Jakarta. Since the late 1990s, he has also written widely for publications such as Artforum, Flash Art and Bijutsu Techo, and he is currently an editorial advisor and occasional contributor to d i ’ v a n | A Journal of Accounts.  

Billy Tang is Senior Curator of the Rockbund Art Museum (RAM) in Shanghai. Joining the museum in Spring 2018, he recently co-curated with director Larys Frogier the first institutional solo exhibition in China for the German conceptual artist Tobias Rehberger; a group exhibition titled “Opera for Animals” in collaboration with Cosmin Constinas, Claire Shea and Hsieh Feng-Rong; and the 2019 edition of the Hugo Boss Asia Art Award for Emerging Artists. He has worked collaboratively with curators and writers to realise exhibitions featuring artists such as Wang Bing, Liu Chuang, Lav Diaz, Li Jinghu, Yu Ji, Nabuqi, Yao Qingmei, Song Ta, and Trevor Yeung. 

Michelle Lim is a writer and curator based in New York and Singapore. She holds a PhD in art history from Princeton University and was a Curatorial Fellow in the Whitney Independent Study Program. Michelle has worked on research and curatorial projects for institutions such as the Asia Society Museum in New York, the Whitney Museum of American Art, Princeton University Art Museum, Singapore Art Museum and the National Museum of Singapore. Exhibitions she has curated include still life (2017) at the Substation, Singapore, Undercurrents: Experimental Ecosystems in Recent Art (2011) at the Kitchen Gallery in New York, and Clang. A Self Portrait (2004) at the Jendela Gallery in the Esplanade.