Something Nothing

(Institute of Contemporary Art Singapore, 2014)

Something Nothing forms a part of Sai Hua Kuan’s explorations of space, which use drawing as a metaphor. In Drawing Between Nothing (2009), the artist suspends bungee cords with magnetic ends that almost join together, ‘revealing’ the invisible magnetic fields between them. His series of videos and performances, Space Drawing, also explores the delineation of space through line, each following the release of a bungee cord stretched across abandoned industrial spaces. Something Nothing explores the possibility of articulating space without the use of line. Inspired by the artist’s idea of translating a blank piece of A4 paper into three dimensions, the work comprises a completely white space that bears no visible markers of its depth. Consisting of an enclosed room— only accessible via a single entrance—it gives those who enter the impression of floating in an infinite space. This sensation is created through the unique architecture of its interior, crafted and curved in such a way that when light is cast into the space, its corners and edges become invisible. On the outside, Something Nothing appears banal, resembling a white room in which nothing much seems to happen. Its transient and humble effects also seem disproportionate to its sophisticated construction, used purely to create an experience of nothingness. Yet it is this incongruence that highlights the irony of Something Nothing, as an intangible experience that relies on the manipulation of physical material. It is both something and nothing; a physical space that evokes an ephemeral experience of being in a vacuum. (Excerpt from Countershadows catalogue)

Something Nothing ICAS_Sai
Something Nothing ICAS_front view