SEA ArtsFest 2014: Invisible Islands: 6771 Miles Away


By atelier | small, Fiona Tan & Hanqing Miao

Dwelling on mythologies of distance, Invisible Islands plays out as a conversation between three architectural designers based in Singapore and an artist based in London, UK. It is set in the Safehouse, a restored Victorian house turned arts space in Peckham, London.

Exploring a site virtually from 6771 miles away – the distance between London and Singapore – the three architectural designers in Singapore conceive a mixed-media intervention that allows visitors to form their own narrative of the Singaporean story through picking up fragments of memory. Through this intervention, a traditionally British Victorian house is transformed into a mode of experiential story-telling. The domestic realm is a space where memories, time-periods and personal narratives transpires. Juxtaposing age-old household superstitions with official historical records of the founding of Singapore, the work celebrates the familiar unfamiliarity of observing and understanding a space from afar.

A tale of cities is told, rising and falling, found and forgotten and found again. Like the birth of many great nations, the founding of Singapore is shrouded with mythologies. We invite you to explore the myths and legends surrounding this mysterious country-state we call home through illusory time, where the past and future exists simultaneously in the present and vice versa.

Invisible Islands is the first collaboration between Singapore-based Architectural Designers atelier | small + Fiona Tan and London-based artist Hanqing Miao.

Saturday-Wednesday, 11th-15th October 2014

Launch event
Friday, 10th October 2014

Safehouse 1
139 Copeland Road
London SE15 3SN

Free, no booking required.

Facebook event page:

atelier | small –
atelier | small is an architectural collective based in Singapore. Their approach towards design in which simple and thoughtful ideas are conceived for the enrichment of our environment reflects a contemplation of space, materials, details and sustainability. atelier | small has often worked collaboratively with visual, sound and dance artists to design and realize art installations.

Fiona Tan
Fiona Tan graduated from The Bartlett, UCL with a Masters in Architecture in 2013 and is interested in the social and political roles that architecture and design can play in shaping society. Central themes that run through her work are the issues of identity, authority and migration. Often humorous or satirical, the deliberate distortion of reality and the uncanny juxtapositions in her work aim to create and suggest alternative yet plausible new modes of living or existing.

Hanqing Miao –
Hanqing Miao is an artist, curator and producer based in the UK whose work exists at the intersections of fields of knowledge, engaging with distance, digital space and the peripherals of cultural thoughts. Her work is often dialogical in nature, expressing ideas through conversational pieces with an emphasis on creating experiences and “happenings” for the .

Safehouse 1 –
Safehouse 1 is a Victorian house in Peckham, London, a former squat venue turned intoan arts space by the artists Jo Dennis and Dido Hallett.. Since falling into dereliction, the house has also been opened up temporarily by Frank Boxer as Peckham Hotel, hosting a bar and pop-up restaurants. Since its launch in February 2014, the venue has been the set of photoshoots, the site of numerous visual art exhibitions as well as hosting a film installation by Dominic Murphy, director of award-winning indie thriller White Lightnin’.

Invisible Islands: 6771 Miles Away is supported by the Singapore International Foundation (SIF).

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