Sharmila Wood


In recent times Singaporean artists have undertaken audacious artistic performances, actions and interventions in public space, highlighting the role of artists as provocateurs of debates around public space and their engagement with issues related to ethical urbanism. Between 2010 – 2020 artists working in diverse fields of artistic practice including visual art, street art, performance art, community arts and new genre public art begun to locate their artwork in public spaces, reaching new audiences whilst forging new conversations about access, inclusion and foregrounding issues around spatial justice. In contesting public space, artists have centralized citizens in a collective discourse around building and shaping the nation. The essay documents key projects, artists and organisations undertaking artistic responses in everyday places and examines the possibility of public art in expanding concepts of ‘the public’ through actions in Singapore’s public space, and demonstrating the role of artists in civil society.



How to Cite
Wood, S. (2020) “Making Space: Singapore, Artists & Art in the Public Realm”, The Journal of Public Space, 5(4), pp. 137–154. doi: 10.32891/jps.v5i4.1408.
Art and Activism
Author Biography

Sharmila Wood, Tarruru

Sharmila Wood is a Curator who works on interdisciplinary creative and cultural initiatives & Curatorship with Distinction from the University of Sydney, and a Bachelor of Arts with Honours from the University of Western Australia. Sharmila has held arts positions in New Delhi, Los Angeles, Sydney and Perth. Sharmila was awarded an Asialink Residency to undertake curatorial research in Indonesia and Singapore. She is widely published in national and international publications. She continues to work with the Independent Curator's International. Sharmila is currently working on public art projects, and concept development for a new cultural centre through her consultancy Tarurru.


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