Yavuz Gallery is proud to present Singaporean artist Khairullah Rahim in The Incredible Frolic, his first solo exhibition with the gallery. The exhibition opens on 17 March 2018 and coincides with Gillman Barracks’ Art Day Out! x Singapore Design Week event.
The Incredible Frolic brings together several autobiographical stories that take place in the most unexpected settings in Taipei and Singapore. It sees the continuation of the artist’s exploration on gay cruising sites, and how specific communities transform public places, instilling them with their memories, histories, and symbolic significance. The exhibition features new sculptures, paintings and installations, including those developed during his recent artist residency at Taipei Artist Village, Taiwan.
During the period of his two-month residency, Khairullah took cue from Taiwan’s first gay-themed novel Crystal Boys (1983) written by author Pai Hsien-yung as he navigated around popular cruising sites around Taipei, namely 228 Peace Memorial Park. Upon his return from the residency programme, the artist developed new works responding to several sites in Singapore, including heavy vehicle carparks, heartland swimming pools and public parks.
Keen observations and interactions with cruisers form a crucial component in Khairullah’s process where he mixes fact and fiction to retell stories situated within the spaces of this thriving activity. Similar to cruising, he employs the act of searching into his artistic process as he sets out to gather urban fragments from these sites, which are subsequently incorporated as materials and found objects into his works. These fragments obtained carry metaphoric meanings that go deeper than the surface appearance of its original particular landscape. The intermingling of materials present new affinities that hint at another language, one premised on touch and texture, to consider stray acts of intimacy often obscured from the public eye, much like in parks, pools and carparks – everyday spaces where alternatives lie hidden in plain sight.