The Garden City is known the world over as one of Southeast Asia’s most innovative and creative arts hubs and if you’re craving culture, here’s our guide to the top 10 art galleries in Singapore.
Also at ION Orchard, the Opera Gallery celebrates some of the world’s finest modernism, impressionism and contemporary artists including Georges Braque, Keith Haring, Henri Matisse, Amedeo Modigliani, Ron Arad and Li Tianbing as well as Chagall, Dali, Picasso, Monet and Renoir.
With 11 galleries around the world including London, Hong Kong, Paris, New York and Dubai, founder Gilles Dyan believes in a melting-pot approach with the works of established artists sitting happily next to those of up-and-coming artists and when you come to the gallery, you’ll find out why Opera is one of Singapore’s best art galleries.
From humble beginnings in a small shophouse on River Valley Road to a beautifully serene 6,000 squared foot space on über-trendy Dempsey Hill, the REDSEA Gallery holds events and exhibitions all year round to showcase local and international artists and is one of the largest and most established contemporary art galleries in Singapore.
The gallery is housed in an old British army barracks and recent exhibitions have included works by Zhuang Hong Yi and ‘Sculptures in Singapore’.
TAKSU Gallery is one of Singapore’s leading contemporary art galleries and represents established global players as well as some of the brightest, freshest and most innovative talent in the region, all with what has been described as ‘an unmistakable urban edge.’
TAKSU is a melting pot of creatives and academics and the ethos of the gallery is to promote dialogue and friendship between artists and at the gallery you can see collages, paintings, murals, multi-media art and pieces by artists from all over the world.
Eponymously named after founder Stephanie Fong, the FOST Gallery focuses predominantly on artists from Singapore. Recently the gallery has featured works by Tang Da Wu, widely acknowledged as the father of contemporary art in Singapore; as well as conceptual artists Heman Chong and Song-Ming Ang.
The gallery represents Jimmy Ong, one of Singapore’s best-known artists, and up-and-coming sculptors Chun Kaifeng and Grace Tan.
Art Seasons Gallery
Opened in 2001, the initial goals of the founder Terry Lee were to promote contemporary Southeast Asian art, paying particular attention to Chinese artists and in the decade and a half since the gallery has been open, it has forged a reputation as one of Singapore’s most important art spaces.
Those in the know look to the Art Seasons Gallery for the skinny on the up and coming stars of the Chinese contemporary art scene, many of whom have gone on to international acclaim.
The Singapore Tyler Print Institute is Asia’s largest print workshop. Housed in a 19th century warehouse on Robertson Quay, the gallery is ‘an advocate for new ideas on contemporary art in print and paper, collaborating with emerging and established artists from around the world to create artwork using its print and paper-making facilities and expertise.’
You’ll find exhibitions, inspiring workshops and programmes and art fairs in this beautifully creative and engaging space.
Gillman Barracks was a British army barracks in colonial times but now it’s a contemporary arts cluster of international art galleries including Sundaram Tagore. Representing artists including sculptors, painters and photographers, the gallery hosts exhibitions, poetry readings, film screenings, book launches and music performances for a real and exciting mix of cultural genres.
There is also the Playeum, an incredible creative space for children and families where you’ll find innovative experiences and novel programmes designed to ignite the imagination and is a ‘must see’ on any tour of the best art galleries in Singapore.
First in Tokyo, then in Beijing and now in Gillman Barracks, Singapore’s premier creative hub, the Mizuma Gallery specialises in Japanese artists with more than a nod to the Land of the Rising Sun’s traditions from artists such as Ai Weiwei, Aida Makoto, Yoshitaka Amano and Yamaguchi Akira.
To get their art to as big an audience as possible, you will see Mizuma’s Japanese and Indonesian artists at a number of the world’s biggest art fairs including Art Stage Singapore and Art Basel Hongkong.
MAD Museum of Art & Design
Occupying a huge 19,000 ft² space with a creative yet industrial vibe, the MAD Museum not only showcases one of the best contemporary art galleries in Singapore, it is for those who have an appreciation of art and design in everyday life. It’s more than just an art gallery.
It’s a fluid, vibrant space with a merchandise store (filled with creations from local artists), a sculpture garden, a cigar bar and a great bistro with a constantly-changing menu and they also hold talks, shows, workshops and temporary exhibitions all year round.
Isabelle and Robert Bartoux have created Galerie Bartoux specialising in contemporary art; more specifically artists who have made significant contributions to surrealism, new realism, cubism and pop and street art in the 20th century. The stunning space at ION Orchard contains some incredible pieces by household names including Picasso, Dali, Chagall, Damien Hirst, Roy Liechtenstein, Richard Orlinksi and Andy Warhol.
In an attempt to raise awareness and appreciation for contemporary art, the gallery will often take works outdoors and display them in prominent areas, including recently Julien Marinetti’s famous pandas so next time you’re out and about on Singapore’s streets, you may well be standing next to a million-dollar installation without knowing it!