SINGAPORE BIENNALE COMMISSION 2022: Talking in Trees Like Shadows Through Leaves

Lucy Davis, Alfian Saat, Zachary Chan, Tini Aliman

Research output: Artistic and non-textual formExhibitionArt in coproductionpeer-review


Devised by Lucy Davis (Migrant Ecologies Project in collaboration with Alfian Saat, Zach Chan and Tini Aliman, this commission is a response to Alfian Sa'at's Essay "Talking in Trees", on the persisting presence of the vegetal in the Malay language*. It involves an in- process experimental book project. comprising: An original essay. An interactive sound composition. Paper puppets, drawings and collage comprised of prints of fragments of a 1930’s teak bed, transparencies of photographs of shadows of leaves on walls of demolished buildings in Tanglin Halt, Singapore, ink, charcoal. Kinetic lights. Patchwork screen. Embroidered text. Bamboo. Shadows.

The Singapore Biennale text reads:
"Daun Telinga (leaf of the ear) Pohon Telinga (tree of the ear), Rumah Pangsa (fruit pod apartments). Language is porous. Contemporary urban Malay is infiltrated by vegetal scales, dimensions, and possibilities. Shadows and echoes are presences that persist, even at a distance from the form or act. What plant-led ecologies might still transpire?"
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationSingapore
PublisherSingapore Art Museum
Publication statusPublished - 16 Oct 2022
MoE publication typeF2 Partial implementation of a work of art or performance
EventSingapore Biennale - Singapore, Singapore
Duration: 16 Oct 202219 Mar 2023


  • Art Ecology
  • Trees & Plants
  • Malay world
  • More than human
  • Porous Languages
  • Contemporary Art
  • Biennale

Field of art

  • Contemporary art


Dive into the research topics of 'SINGAPORE BIENNALE COMMISSION 2022: Talking in Trees Like Shadows Through Leaves'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this