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No. 017 | Singapore

Speak Cryptic (b. 1980, Singapore) is an artist working and living in Singapore. Endless manifestations of the self are a feature of Speak Cryptic's work – identity rippling forth through texts and phrases extracted from punk lyrics, intricate patterns and figures. His constellation of drawings, paintings and installations stem from personal inquiries into ancestral migration, ethnic dislocation, gentrification and alternative subcultures. Arriving at the realm of contemporary art via urban art origins, Speak's distinctive style has taken on a painterly quality as his work has evolved.


His solo exhibitions include Open My Heart, Ease My Task, Loosen the Knot on My Tongue (2019) and Knives in the Water (2017) at Chan + Hori Contemporary in Singapore and Sorry, Not Sorry (2015) at Officina delle Zattere in Venice, Italy. Key group exhibitions include the Koganecho Art Bazaar (Yokohama, Japan, 2018); The 1st Kuala Lumpur Biennale (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 2017); Secret Archipelago (Paris, France, 2015) and the Singapore Biennale (Singapore, 2013).


His works are held in private collections in Australia, Indonesia, Italy, Malaysia, Singapore, Switzerland, the U.K. and U.S.A. International residencies he has embarked on include the Salamanca Arts Centre (Hobart, Australia, 2020); Cite Internationale de Paris (Paris, France, 2015) and Agit (Busan, South Korea, 2013).


Ink as a medium has its roots in the 7th and 8th centuries, applied to paper and silk to form the foundation of civilisations.


Carrying forward this hallmark of quality, The Weight of Water by Speak Cryptic is a body of exquisite artworks in archival quality carbon ink, crafted with a writing instrument made of glass. Carbon ink is waterproof and does not fade even when bleached or exposed to constant sunlight.


Grounded in the notion of multiple identities that flow and overlap in the evolving self, The Weight of Water is a philosophical inquiry into the states of mind where one gives up full control. The creative process behind these works is cathartic; an act of letting go. Within each artwork lies a figure, detailed arrangements of strokes that hold the trappings of human beings. If one was immersed in a body of water that held our collective consciousness, these forms would be what is left when we emerge - remnants of who we are and what we pledge allegiance to.


No. 035 | Singapore

Price List

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All artworks:

Carbon ink on 300gsm rough Arches paper (100% cotton)
Archival quality frame with UV45% anti-reflective glass, corflute backing, 1” acid free white window mat, acid base mat and hinging

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