OH! Kampong Gelam (2024)

Kampong Gelam, Art Walk

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Scrape, scratch, scrape again. Repeat over decades (or two centuries), and there is some semblance of what this place means. A young gelam tree is planted. Each day, tourists surround the tree and run their hands over its bark, to affirm what this place means: a place named after a tree.

Join us on a guided art walk to see 11 site-specific art installations within Kampong Gelam. This walk is not only about trees, but also their ghosts, their past lives, and how maps have shaped this neighbourhood. Lines and boundaries, scraped and scratched into the surface over and over, until they blend into a palimpsest of fickle lines and faithless memories.

For each road drawn, each building gazetted, each heritage plaque erected, there is a missing story that speaks of fractured spaces and communities long gone. This neighbourhood still holds its scars, scrapes and scratches, its dreams and tragedies.

Period: 30 Mar - 12 May 2024 (Sat & Sun, closed on 13, 14 April)
Time: Various time slots available
Tickets: $35 (Available exclusively on Klook, the Official Experience Partner)
Supported by: Aliwal Arts Centre, Arts Fund


Tanah Air: Kampong Gelam by Another Name

Date: 2 March 2024, Saturday
Time: 10am - 11:30am
Venue: 45 Sultan Gate S(198492) Level 2
Admission: Free
Register here

Tanah – land. Air – water. Tanah air – homeland.

Kampong Gelam today is a patchwork of bars and cafes, souvenir stores and capsule hotels. It is where indie crowds and tourists flock to eat and shop in the day; at night, hotel guests remain. But this was not always the case – entire communities used to live here for centuries. Despite attempts to transform Kampong Gelam, what personal histories remain and what community memories defy erasure?

Join our speakers as they discuss their respective research, reflections, and lived experiences of Kampong Gelam – the land of a former thriving Malay port town and the waters of early riverine settlements. Learn to call Kampong Gelam by its other name: home.

Syafiqah Jaaffar (Curator, Writer, Researcher)

Faizah Jamal (Resident of Kampong Gelam)
Dr Imran Tajudeen (Senior Lecturer, National University of Singapore)
Sara Lau (Cultural Worker)

Food, Fashion, Faith: The Faces of Women Leadership in Kampong Gelam

Date: 9 March 2024, Saturday
Time: 10am - 11:30am
Venue: 45 Sultan Gate S(198492) Level 2
Admission: Free
Register here

The first local mosque to be named after a woman. The first magazine for Malay women in the region.

Kampong Gelam is historically a centre of enterprise in Singapore and the Malay world. It is also a place of many firsts for women. From Hajjah Fatimah to Saleha Mohd Shah, women pioneers made a name for themselves and paved new paths for their communities. Their legacy continues to inspire new generations of trailblazing Malay women in an increasing number of fields.

Join us for a conversation with Kampong Gelam entrepreneurs in the fields of food, faith, and fashion.  

Oniatta Effendi (Founder, Galeri Tokokita)

Maria Didih (Second-Generation Owner, Hjh Maimunah Restaurant)
Ustazah Liyana Musfirah (CEO and Founder, Hayaa’ Network)
Zahra Aljunied (Third-Generation Representative, Toko Aljunied)

Photos: Axel Toh & Marvin Lee

Art Walk

OH Open House Ltd
92C Syed Alwi Road
Level 4
Singapore 207668
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