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Immersive Exhibition on Lee Kuan Yew's Life and Legacy Aims to Inspire Young Singaporeans

SINGAPORE — Growing up, Ms Karen Seah heard stories from her grandparents and parents about how the older generations of Singaporeans lived in poverty.

They also told her about the “man” — Mr Lee Kuan Yew — whose constant quest for excellence and progress made Singapore what it is today.
“Those tales taught us how lucky we are,” said the 52-year-old. “I sometimes forget how poor Singapore used to be, let alone someone who’s 13 or 25 years old.”

Over the past five months, the founder of creative studio X3D engaged about 200 multinational talents to create an immersive exhibition chronicling Mr Lee’s life and legacy in celebration of his birth centenary. The late Mr Lee was born on Sept 16, 1923.

The first-of-its-kind project blends virtual production, artificial intelligence (AI), generative art, architecture, sculpture art, film and music.

Titled Now Is Not The Time, it signals that while Singapore has come a long way, it is not the time to rest on its laurels, said Ms Seah.

“We’ve merged the powers of art, technology and storytelling to create an exhibition we hope resonates with different generations and across borders,” she said.

“It’s our way of connecting Singapore’s younger generation with the past so that they fully appreciate what it took to build this safe and prosperous country.”

The project occupies 40,000 sq ft of exhibition space in Pasir Panjang, and it takes about 30 minutes to walk through the entire production.

The organisers expect about 30,000 visitors over 15 days – and not just locals but also foreigners, since it coincides with the Formula One Singapore Airlines Singapore Grand Prix held from Sept 15 to 17.

Among those involved in the project were American artist Daniel Arsham, design studio Brewin Design Office, production house Refinery Media, award-winning composer Tay Chee Wei and students from Lasalle College of the Arts (Lasalle) and Nanyang Polytechnic (NYP).
Mr Arsham, who created a series of art pieces, including a full-body sculpture of Mr Lee when he declared Singapore’s separation from Malaysia, said: “The futuristic nature of the city is incredibly inspiring to me and I’m truly humbled to be part of the celebrations marking Mr Lee’s 100th birthday.”

He hoped that the sculptures “will inspire a new generation and help them to understand and appreciate the importance of his legacy as a revered global leader”.


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