About the Exhibition

Sensing States: Healing Spaces is a three-part exhibition installation by Zen Teh. Through extraction and reconstruction of natural elements, this installation, commissioned by The Substation Art and Science Open Call, aims to contextualise nature in relation to Singapore as an urban environment. In particular, a desire towards an unspoilt environment is alliterated with the notion of nature's healing properties.

Ideas such as the therapeutic properties of being immersed in a forest, and the pharmaceutical applications of plants in traditional Chinese medicine are examined through the course of this exhibition. In its progression, the exhibition references Daoist teachings, charting a path that aims to achieve harmony with the inner consciousness and our surroundings. Visitors are invited to experience the intangible, the transcendent power of nature and therefore to re-establish their connection with nature.

About the Recipient

Zen Teh (born and lives in Singapore, 1988) is the recipient of The Substation Art and Science Open Call. She is an artist interested in man’s relationship with the natural world. Through her travels, she learns about environmental issues and uses her craft to comment on the impact of global development upon the environment. With roots in painting and photography, Zen’s art practice is mediated through explorations of light, perspective and composition.

About the Scientific Advisor

For Sensing States: Healing Spaces, Zen worked closely with Ching Jianhong, the scientific advisor for this exhibition. Jianhong is currently an Instructor in the DUKE-NUS Graduate Medical School and Manager of the DUKE-NUS Metabolomics. A unique collaboration of Art and Science, Sensing States: Healing Spaces explores the harmony between mankind and nature, a desire for an unspoilt environment.

About The Substation Art and Science Open Call

The Substation’s Open Call programme has supported emerging artists since 2008, showcasing experimental work that pushes the boundaries of artistic expression. It is an important platform in Singapore’s contemporary art scene for discovering and supporting the work of promising artistic talents.

The Substation Art and Science Open Call aims to provide a platform for art practitioners and science professionals to investigate the possibilities of interdisciplinary practice. In creating Sensing States: Healing Spaces, Zen and Jianhong have received support and from a panel of consultants consisting of Robert Zhao (artist/founder of Institute of Critical Zoologists), Andreas Schlegel (artist/lecturer in Media Arts at LASALLE College of the arts), Chris Lee (Creative Director and Founder of ASYLUM), Adeline Seah (science professional), and Lee Weng Choy (advisor).

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About The Substation

Founded in 1990, The Substation is Singapore's first independent contemporary arts centre. Since its inception, The Substation has supported local and overseas artists by promoting research, experimentation and innovation in the arts, and aims to bring different artistic perspectives together in critical dialogue. They present and co-present a wide range of artists and programmes, from traditionally-trained dancers to local rock bands; established visual artists to young poets; publications to short film festivals; experimental theatre to seminal conferences on Singapore arts and culture.

Over the years, The Substation has worked with some of Singapore’s most critically acclaimed artists, writers and intellectuals. They continue to work closely with young and emerging artists, supporting them and nurturing their growth through their core programmes and other means.

The Substation is a recipient of the National Arts Council's Major Grant 2015-2017.

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Credit List

Sensing States: Healing Spaces, The Substation Art and Science Open Call

Art and Science Open Call Recipient: Zen Teh

Main Scientific Consultant: Ching Jianhong 

Sound Designer:  Brain O Reilly

Production: Jeremy Chua 

Writer: Hera

Herbalist: Martin Cheng, Tan Thean Teng

Consultants: Robert Zhao, Andreas Schlegel, Chris Lee, Lee Weng Choy, Adeline Seah