11 May 2010

Uniquely Singapore? a generi-City project - Discussion 1

Creative [SIN]ergy will be participating in this year's London Festival of Architecture. Presenting Uniquely Singapore? a generi-City project as a 3 phase project. Phase One: A web site, Phase Two: A Photography Exhibition and Phase Three: A publication. This first discussion was conducted by Creative [SIN]ergy member Calvin Chua, which was held on Saturday 9th May 2010 at the Architectural Association School of Architecture.

Uniquely Singapore? a generi-City project , is an architectural investigation of Singaporean spaces as generic. This project seeks to consolidate a re-reading of Singapore’s urban spaces that differs from/ reacts to the dominant image of unique as enforced by tourism, literature. Although being dubbed as a city with a “unique” blend of different cultures by the Singapore Tourism Board under its previous slogan of “Uniquely Singapore”, Singapore is by default like any other cities characterized by a generic set of spaces that organizes and manages daily life. Rather than claiming uniqueness through cultural references in architectural expression or iconic figurative gestures; this project aims to rediscover the uniqueness of Singapore’s urban spaces through the most generic and banal scenes of everyday life. Through the generic, latent conditions within the city will be revealed.

Six key activity spaces which host collective life in Singapore have been identified:

- Transit Space
- Eating Space
- Leisure Space
- Retail Space
- Living Space
- Occupational Space

These spaces will be juxtaposed against other cities which provide a basis for analyzing the similarity and difference in their spatial usage in hosting these activities. Through this comparison conversation, the project hopes to dissect sets of generic architectural typology that provide the framework and characteristics of these spaces. Therefore, it is only through the celebration of the generic that the uniqueness of Singapore can be achieved.

During the
discussion every group took very different approach, some focused more on the composition of images, some were more interested in the spaces that evoke memories while others looked a the differences in the spaces between Singapore and London as a result of socio-political and environmental conditions.