OUR ORIGIN STORY
“When I first moved to Singapore, I shifted with my few belongings into a shophouse. I wanted to use the space better, so I invited an artist, Xiao Yun, to do something. All I gave her was a house key. No guidance, no parameters. I enjoyed the process and final installation so much, I thought, “Why don’t my neighbours do the same thing?” Alan [co-founder] was the first person who not only loved the idea, but wanted to do it. For our first few art walkabouts, it was just Alan and me with a part-time team. Today, we have a full-time team, and we are an Institute of Public Character. We continue to bring art out of museums and galleries and into our everyday spaces, bringing art to the public. Most importantly, we give artists opportunities to lead national conversations – to question our way of life, to chart our way forward.”
— Oliver Bettin, Co-founder, Chairperson
WHAT DO PEOPLE SAY ABOUT US?
“I like seeing regular paraphernalia from the school classrooms and the residents’ own decor amongst the exhibits… Each OH! Open House event I’ve managed to attend has been memorable and different...”
–– @Pickleandpepper, Audience, OH! Emerald Hill
“I have always appreciated OH! for its courage to challenge Singapore. I would even use the word ‘radical’, for the fact that it made art walkabouts a thing in a tightly-regulated city, and introduced art into neighbourhoods where some people do not even have the slight interest to step into a museum to look at art. It forces artists to explain art to (sometimes illiterate) kopitiam uncles, and forces yuppies to listen to stories about back alleys and people whose voices are small and forgotten. It forces the exchange between the unlikely, ruffle some feathers, and get us thinking.”
–– Lim Qi Xuan, Designer and Sculptor, worked with OH! in 2015 – 2016