FY2005 Cultural Medallion Grant Recipients Initiate New Projects



Six recipients of Singapore’s highest arts accolade, the Cultural Medallion (CM), are set to embark on new major projects funded through the National Arts Council's (NAC) Cultural Medallion Grant Scheme.


With an increased budget to support the work of CM recipients, NAC was able to extend its CM Grant support for applications received in FY2005. The FY2005 recipients are: M Balakrisnan (2005 CM for Literature), Phoon Yew Tien (1996 CM for Music), Neila Sathyalingam (1989 CM for Dance), Goh Beng Kwan (1989 CM for Art), Iskandar Jalil (1988 CM for Art), and Hj Muhammed Ariff bin Ahmad a.k.a. MAS (1987 CM for Literature). They will each receive $50,000 for their work.

By July 2006, Balakrisnan will publish six hardcover Tamil books comprising new, unpublished and out-of-print short stories and novels. Comprising Poruththam, Vikaraip Pookkal, Ninaivukalin Kolangal + AlaigalMA Ilangkannan's Complete Short Stories, MA Ilangkannan's Ulugam, and Best Short Stories of MA Ilangkannan, these publications will showcase Singapore’s Tamil Literature in the international literary scene.


Phoon will produce an educational CD on Chinese orchestral music and instruments, accompanied with a booklet with script-narration in English. The CD will explain the background, effects and musical ability of various Chinese orchestra instruments and will also feature original works composed by Phoon, ranging from instrumentals to full orchestral pieces.


Neila Sathyalingam will create Sivakamiyin Sapatham, a theatre, dance and music production based on the epic historic romance novel by Kakli Krishnamurthy. The first of its kind in both Singapore andIndia, this production is planned for staging in February 2007, while a 2-week long exhibition showcasing historical architecture during the Pallava period in Indian history, is scheduled to be opened in October 2006.


Goh will stage an exhibition of 40 paintings in both Singapore and San Diego. Titled Journeys, it is a consolidation of the artist’s works to date that explores new territory for him both individually as an artist, and thematically, in showcasing local vignettes of his travels through Asia. Goh's quest as an artist and a Singaporean is to cross imaginary boundaries of culture, time and space.


Iskandar Jalil's 6th solo exhibition will tour Japan and Singapore in 2007. Featuring new and recent works, it traces his development in ceramic art over the past 40 years, re-examining his use of clay, glaze and form. Plans also include the publishing of a fully-researched book of his life and works, with examples of past works, essays, interviews, photo-documentation and sketches.


Last but not least, MAS will work on three volumes of works that encapsulate the meaning of Malay culture in literature and various aspects of life. Previously unpublished, there will be book launches as well as a MAS Life Story Photo Exhibition in Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.


The NAC’s Cultural Medallion Grant Scheme was launched in November 2000 to encourage Cultural Medallion recipients to create new works.  It also seeks to increase the profile of the recipients and their works both internationally and nationally.  The scheme was birthed through recommendations from the Renaissance City Report to support original works or commission new works by Cultural Medallion recipients.  To date, the Grant has been given to 22 Cultural Medallion recipients.


We look forward to the fruition of these projects and invite you to take this opportunity to extend our Cultural Medallion Award recipients media coverage as they embark on their newest works.


For media queries, please contact:


Eileen A. Chua

Corporate Communications Manager                       

DID: 68379575 | Mobile: 90483141 | Email: eileen_chua@nac.gov.sg         


Nigel Sim 

Assistant Director, Corporate Communications       

DID: 68379730 | Mobile: 96805045 | Email: nigel_sim@nac.gov.sg