Singapore is not exactly known for its street art, especially of the unofficial kind. But there is one neighborhood that abounds with murals, storefront paintings, the occasional tag, and even an “outdoor art gallery”: Kampong Glam.
Once home to Malay royalty and later designated Singapore’s Arab region by the British, Kampong Glam is now a mashup of clothing shops, cafes, bars, youth hostels, galleries, carpet vendors, fabric stores, and all-around fun. If you want color, this is the place to be.
I started my tour of street art in the alleys behind the Aliwal Arts Center …
… where I found a huge range of work:
Just a few blocks away is Sultan Arts Village on Sultan Gate Street …
… which is covered in art on all sides:
There’s also a space out back for graffiti art, courtesy of The Blackbook Studio…
… and you can buy works of art at the galleries inside (these are from The Gallery by Clay Journey):
On Subhan Street (which feels more like a very wide alleyway), you’ll find what’s been dubbed a “street art gallery” …
… where the back of nearly every building has been painted by a different artist:
Even the trash bins are in on the action!
You’ll find another similar “gallery” two blocks over on Muscat Street:
I loved the interplay of art and plant life here:
The best-known murals of Kampong Glam are probably those on Haji Lane and Bagdad Streets.
When we’re not in the time of COVID, tourists line up to take pictures all along this stretch.
You can also sit down and eat with various styles of art …
… just overhead:
They’ve transformed some of the shophouse facades:
A few blocks north, this huge mural runs along Victoria Street near Jalan Pinang:
But largest sections of wall art in Kampong Glam have to be these two pieces by Didier Jaba Mathieu (0n the corner of Ophir Road & Beach Road), Galactic Minah…
… and El Lio:
For more of Mathieu’s work, you can search out the hidden alley between Arab Street and Jalan Pinang …
… where you’ll also find a couple of tags and a dragon out behind a fried chicken shop:
There’s more street art to be found in the easy-to-miss alley between Beach Road and Pahang Street …
… including this tribute to Singapore’s history …
… and a “batik graffiti” mural by my new favorite Singapore street artist, Slacsatu:
As of mid-2021, there’s a whole wall of hoarding along Ophir Street — and it’s all been painted by different mural artists. Great stuff!
Kampong Glam offers all sorts of public art. You can wander by the spectacularly-shaped Vintage Camera Museum & Click Art Museum …
… wish that the Children Little Museum (with this merry-go-round-horse on the sidewalk out front) were still open …
… walk to this rather random sculpture in a grassy field near Sultan Gate …
… or stroll through the grounds of the Malay Heritage Centre and check out the art installations:
For more Singapore street art, check out Little India and Chinatown!
Oh wow, I love this!! Definitely unexpected seeing that it is in Singapore!!
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