Multimedia exhibition The Swimming Pool Library seeks to challenge cultural norms about masculinity

Consisting of an exhibition and performance, the installation takes patrons on a less conventional coming of age journey involving paper sketches, paintings and 3D printed sculptures.

Naren Sankar

Nostalgic man, never giving up. Loves cartoons.

Published: 22 September 2021, 11:36 AM

Cultural norms associate being a man with strength, dominance, control and other traditional gender traits. But what of feminine traits such as tenderness, vulnerability, intimacy and being in touch with one’s emotions?

The multimedia installation called The Swimming Pool Library aims to tackle that question by taking patrons on a less conventional coming of age journey involving an exhibition of paper sketches, paintings, and 3D printed sculptures.

The exhibition is free and runs from Oct 21 to Nov 7 at T:>Works Singapore from 12pm to 7pm on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays, and from 12pm to 6pm on Thursdays and Fridays.

Complementing the exhibition is a live performance specially choreographed for the camera and performed on site, while simultaneously being live-cast over the internet. It stars Karen Tan, Irfan Kasban, drag artist Azizul ‘Izzy’ Mahathir, better known as Vanda Miss Joaquim and more.

The performance will be held at 8pm on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 8pm, and 3pm on Saturdays and Sundays. Tickets to the live performances, which will be held from Oct 21 to Oct 30, will be required.

Tickets for the exhibition with live performance cost $35 while the tickets to the exhibition with live-cast cost $15. It can be purchased here.

The multimedia exhibition is directed by Brian Gothong Tan, best known for his cutting-edge and highly engaging works in theatre, film and installation art in Singapore.

He named the exhibition after a book of the same name, which focuses on the friendship of two men: William Beckwith, a young gay aristocrat who leads a life of privilege and promiscuity and Lord Nantwich, an elderly man searching for someone to write his biography and inherit his traditions.

This event is T:>Works Singapore first since the third and final instalment of the Festival of Women N.O.W. (not ordinary work) in July.

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