Singapore Biennale 2008 Groundbreaking Ceremony




11 September – 16 November 2008


(Vernissage:  9 – 10 September 2008)


Shigeru Ban’s Containart Pavilion will house three of the largest indoor installations in exhibition


A desolate snowscape, alien civilizations, interactive ellipses and even the underwater world will be “created” in the name of art at Marina Bay for the upcoming Singapore Biennale 2008 (SB2008), organised by the National Arts Council (NAC).


To mark the start of an exciting journey down the theme of WONDER for Singapore’s premier international contemporary visual arts eventNAC Chairman, Edmund Cheng officiated at the groundbreaking ceremony of Shigeru Ban’s Containart Pavilion, held at the Central Promontory Site today.


The Containart Pavilion, an architectural creation by internationally well-known Japanese artist Ban, will be constructed using 150 twenty-foot long shipping containers, along with 34 ten-metre recyclable paper tubes.


Once completed, this stunning spacious structure will house three of SB2008’s largest indoor installations – Manas by Ilya and Emilia Kabakov (Russia), Between You and I by Anthony McCall (UK), and Location (6) by Hans Op de Beeck (Belgium).


In addition, Australian artist Gary Carsley’s works will also be featured in the form of functional tables and chairs within the pavilion that come completely cladded with flora-themed scenery prints photographed from Singapore’s parks and gardens.


Besides, the environmental-friendly pavilion will act as one of the information centres for the exhibition. It revisits Ban’s previous contribution to Singapore Biennale 2006, where he designed the media centre made from recycled paper tubes.


Outside the Containart Pavilion, artists Alfredo Juan Aquilizan and Maria Isabel Aquilizan (Philippines) will create an “underwater world of fishes” by recycling about 6000 old slippers for their site-specific installation.


Curated by Artistic Director Fumio Nanjo (Japan), Joselina Cruz (Philippines) and Matthew Ngui (Singapore), SB2008 will feature an illustrious list of more than 50 artists and art collectives from over 36 countries and regions including Singapore. 


The exhibition which opens from 11 September to 16 November, aims to build on the critical success of its inaugural 2006 predecessor and continue to be the significant cultural event that brings visual arts into the daily lives of Singaporeans.


Shigeru Ban’s Containart Pavilion is sponsored by Neptune Orient Lines (NOL), Club 21 and Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA). Gary Carsley’s works are sponsored by Ikea.


Please refer to the following annexes for more information:

Annex 1 – Biography of Shigeru Ban


Annex 2 – Artists’ works in/outside the Containart Pavilion


Annex 3 – About Exhibition Venue: Marina Bay