Chope culture has truly made it abroad, partly thanks to this artist who has taken the Singapore culture of reserving tables using tissue paper and turned himself into a life-size tissue packet at an exhibition in Paris.
Artist Rizman Putra decided to be a tissue packet for a day and bring our culture to a Paris exhibition called Urban Art Singapore, launched Friday by the Singapore Embassy in Paris and the Urban Art Fair in France.
In the piece, he is seen wearing a tissue packet costume with the words “Grotesque” and the tagline “Choices for better lives” as he lays down in the middle of the art gallery to “chope” the floor, much to the amusement of passers-by.
The explanation provided by the Singapore Embassy of Paris for the piece was that Rizman “choping” the floor was a sign of him claiming ownership over the visitors of the exhibition.
Rizman said to BERITA Mediacorp that the piece may look strange in a foreign context but the culture of reserving seats is an everyday phenomenon in Singapore.
“For a visitor that comes to Singapore, they find it very strange… they don’t do that in their countries,” he added.
The event was supported by various ministries from Singapore including the National Arts Council and Singapore Tourism Board and featured 11 Singapore artists showcasing their works for the next two weeks.
Curator Iman Ismail said to Channel NewsAsia that the exhibition aims to celebrate “the essence and psyche of what Singaporeans are through arts and culture”.
If it’s any doubt what Singaporeans are then from our tissue packet “chope” culture, it’s that we are: 1) busy, 2) need to find seats so we can eat during lunch hour, and 3) pragmatic.
That’s pretty much it.
This article, This Singapore artist became a life-size tissue packet to ‘chope’ the floor as part of a Paris exhibition, originally appeared on Coconuts, Asia's leading alternative media company. Want more Coconuts? Sign up for our newsletters!