[Interview] Every Painting Tells a Story: National Gallery Singapore X Samsung Art Store Partnership Introduces World to Southeast Asian ArtBy STF News
Art is a reflection of a region’s history, providing valuable insights into the direction society is headed. This is especially true for National Gallery Singapore, which oversees the world’s largest public collection of modern Singapore and Southeast Asian art — acting as a “melting pot” of art from the region.
Samsung Art Store is an art subscription service that began in 2017 for The Frame, the company’s lifestyle TV. In partnership with more than 50 museums and galleries worldwide, the service provides more than 2,000 pieces of artwork, ranging from famous paintings to unique pieces from emerging artists. Through this service, users can access various works of art in 4K resolution from the comfort of their own homes.
Since April 2022, Samsung Art Store has been partnering with National Gallery Singapore to bring consumers a curated selection of prominent artworks by Singaporean and Southeast Asian artists. A leading visual arts institution, the Gallery is a custodian of over 8,000 works that form Singapore’s National Collection, which capture the changing landscape of this dynamic region.
Samsung Newsroom sat down with Jason Ong, Director, Partnership Development at National Gallery Singapore to discuss how the Gallery and its partnership with Samsung Art Store are redefining the role of art galleries and its role in fostering diversity and accessibility.
▲ National Gallery Singapore
Q: National Gallery Singapore’s partnership with Samsung Art Store is fairly recent, having been announced in April 2022. Can you tell us a bit about the inspiration behind this partnership?
National Gallery Singapore is committed to making our collection more accessible as well as to deepen the public’s engagement with our artworks. Collaboration with like-minded partners, such as Samsung, help us to achieve this goal. We are especially heartened to know that though this partnership, artworks from our collection can reach an international audience in the comforts of their home.
As the first Southeast Asian museum represented in the Art Store, our presence on the Art Store allows us to showcase some of our key artworks to a global audience; we hope that this will enhance awareness and appreciation of our region’s rich art history.
Through technology, visitors are able to have a glimpse of the diversity of art and narratives showcased through the selected artworks. We hope this partnership will ignite more interest not only for works from our collection but also for Singapore and Southeast Asian art in general.
Q: Can you tell us more about the Gallery’s goal to foster and inspire a creative and inclusive society? What does this look like?
The Gallery is working towards expanding the hearts, perspectives and horizons of the public through art. We have been steadfast in our ambition to deepen art appreciation in our audiences. Our desire to develop the Gallery as a space for dialogue and discovery also extends to the exhibitions we present. By sharing the magic of storytelling with all, our exhibitions and programs can add to, adapt or remake age-old tales. Our critically acclaimed exhibitions are curated to promote conversations and encourage fresh perspectives on the art of Singapore, Southeast Asia and the world.
Q: Samsung Art Store recently updated its selection from the Gallery’s diverse collections to include pieces from renowned artists such as You Khin, John Turnbull Thomson and Raden Saleh. How were these works chosen?
We display a unique transnational approach towards our collection as we aim to rewrite the art histories of this region. The works selected for Samsung — varying in medium, subject matter and social concerns — demonstrate the diversity of art from the region. You will find a wide range of works drawn from various countries in the region from the 19th to 20th century, varying in medium and artistic style.
Q: Which three would you recommend for users to display on The Frame?
Kampong Pasir Panjang was painted by Singaporean artist, Idris Ali, in 1965. Idris Ali’s paintings of Singapore are important as they serve as visual documentation of our national heritage. We hope that this painting provides an insight into the local landscape of early post-independence Singapore.
▲ Kampong Pasir Panjang (1965) by Idris Mohd Ali
You Khin’s Untitled (Doha Scene: Pakistani Bakers) records the local Pakistani bakery that Cambodian artist, You Khin often visited with his children during his years in Doha and offers insights into how he passed the time in his adopted home. This painting also demonstrates how other regions of the world are interpreted in Southeast Asia’s modern art through artists who travelled widely like You Khin.
▲ Untitled (Doha Scene: Pakistani Bakers) (1990) by You Khin
Boschbrand (Forest Fire) is one of the most iconic artworks of the Gallery represented in the Art Store since the inception of the partnership in April. While this piece isn’t one of the latest additions to the Art Store, it is a remarkable artwork with a dramatic representation of wild animals chased by flames to the edge of the precipice. The work was presented as a gift by Indonesian artist Raden Saleh to his patron King Willem III of the Netherlands in 1850. It is monumental in scale; we are glad that this masterpiece can be displayed and appreciated by The Frame owners from the comforts of their homes.
▲ Boschbrand (Forest Fire) (1849) by Raden Saleh
Q: You’ve worked on digital projects ranging from NFTs to the Web3 universe to make art more interactive and accessible. How do you foresee technology bridging the accessibility gap for consumers and artists in the coming years?
We must continue to harness this ability as we press towards the digital realm alongside everyone else. It is not enough to replicate the experience of visiting our galleries. Instead, visitors will have the opportunity to craft their own unique museum experience through modes of online engagement centered on interaction. Through video tutorials, games and livestreams, individuals can query artists; children can make art with their parents; and students can tour our exhibitions with their teachers.
As part of this initiative, the Gallery has recently created a private blockchain for “Adopt Now,” a public crowdfunding initiative that allows anyone to adopt part of an artwork from its art collection for as little as 50 Singapore Dollars. We are thrilled to report that this micro-giving initiative has received an encouraging response.
Q: Do you have any other upcoming exhibitions or projects you can tell us about? Do you have plans for any more digital art projects in the future?
As an innovative museum, National Gallery Singapore continues to innovate and explore emerging technologies to see what is possible in creating more opportunities for art appreciation among our visitors. To make art even more accessible, the Gallery launched ARText in September, an interactive platform that lets users learn about Southeast Asian art through daily conversations on common messaging apps.
ARText is built on the concept of micro-learning and delivers bite-size and interactive art learning experiences to mobile devices. The Gallery is also looking at personalizing the experience by integrating artificial intelligence text recognition software.
To see more artwork from National Gallery Singapore, head to Samsung Art Store in The Frame.
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[Interview] Mulga X Samsung Art Store Partnership Brings Unlimited Potential to Artists of the Digital EraBy STF News
Samsung Art Store is the epitome of the digital-physical blend, taking over today’s art experiences. It allows widely acclaimed galleries, museums and artists to showcase their masterpieces to users around the world through The Frame’s immaculate digital display. Since its launch in 2017, Samsung Art Store allows extraordinary, one-of-a-kind art selections to be accessible to consumers from the comfort of their own homes.
Mulga is the embodiment of the cool “art dude” persona. The Sydney-based Australian artist is a freelance illustrator, published author and muralist, whose style is vibrant, intricate and just fun. With a career beginning in finance, he transitioned to making a living through art when he decided he wanted to do something he was truly passionate about.
Now, Mulga makes a living doing what he loves. His art is inspired by animals, summer and the ocean, which is brought to life through Samsung’s Art Store. Samsung Newsroom sat down with Mulga to hear more about his artistic process and how he sees digital transformation affecting the art world.
Q: Your work is described by others as intricate, vibrant and unique. In your own words, how would you describe your art style?
I’d say it has a lot of summer vibes and humor to it. It also has real Australian vibes. There are always the black lines and details with an element of fun that tie it all together. You could say that it is art that brings a smile to your face and makes you feel good.
Q: You’ve worked on a variety of projects — collaborations with big brands, murals, smaller original paintings and snowboards. What has been one of your recent favorites?
Last month, I painted a 100-meter-long mural on the beach at Port Macquarie, and that was an awesome one to do. I love the beach, summer and surfing; so, it was the perfect location. At one stage, the waves were washing up against the wall while I was painting, and I had to time it with the tides. This made it a bit more exciting.
Q: How did you start working with Samsung and the Art Store? What excites you the most about this partnership?
I’ve worked with Samsung on a bunch of different campaigns over the years, usually creating art using Samsung products. One time, I even created over 19 mobile phone wallpapers. Samsung is a great partner to work with because they have cool products and do a lot of collaborations with creatives.
I got involved with the Art Store when The Frame was first launched. Samsung licensed one of my gorilla artworks to display on the TVs and to use for printed ads. I painted live at the launch in Sydney and worked a big mural in Melbourne promoting The Frame.
Having my work in the Art Store means that people all around the world are discovering my art. Once someone has seen my piece in the Art Store, they are more likely to find my website, in search for the original painting that they have displayed on their TV. Also, there are royalties based on how long my art is on display on all the TVs around the world.
Q: Much of your work is done in a real, physical way — painting. How do you find your paintings translate to digital display on The Frame? Do you have plans to work with other mediums in the future?
It works great. I scan all my artworks into a high-resolution digital format for The Frame, and it looks close to a real-life painting. While I have no plans to change the way I paint, I would love to turn my paintings into 3D works of art — really big public ones — in the future.
Q: How has your own artwork evolved as technology advanced? Are there any notable changes to your work that were deeply impacted by innovations in technology?
With the rise in blockchain technology and the new thing of being able to ‘own’ digital art now via NFTs, digital art is really having its heyday. As an artist, it is a great thing. I’ve been creating digital art a lot more and particularly when working on my own NFT collection “MulgaKongz.” By creating art on a tablet, I can work anywhere — at the beach, on a boat or in a motor vehicle. It’s very convenient.
In terms of displaying the artwork, digital displays like The Frame provide colors that are super vibrant with all the details on full display. The colors can sometimes even be more vibrant than the real-life paintings so that they appear supercharged. A lot of the times when the artworks are displayed on The Frame, they are larger than the real-life version, and a lot of the details are more noticeable too, which can be more impactful than the real-life smaller versions.
Q: What three pieces of yours would you recommend for users to display on The Frame?
It really comes down to personal preference, but I can tell you that last month, my most popular artwork in the Art Store was the Clifford King of the Point. It’s a painting of a big, bearded dude, standing with his surfboard on my local beach, and he is surrounded by goofy looking seagulls. It’s summery, fun and colorful.
▲ Clifford King of the Point (2020)
The second most viewed artwork of mine last month was a colorful collage style artwork titled Under the Sea. It features coral, fish with moustaches, bearded pineapples and octopus tentacles. I originally drew this artwork for a chain of Poke Bowl restaurants in my hometown of Sydney.
▲ Under the Sea (2018)
Another one of my favorite artworks in the Art Store is titled Cactus Brothers. It’s a painting of two cactus characters wearing sombreros under a starry night sky. They are in the desert surrounded by cacti and palm trees, and an oasis style lake is in the background. It was an artwork, which I was commissioned to paint for a cactus-loving collector of my art.
▲ Cactus Brothers (2021)
To see more of Mulga’s artwork, head to the Samsung Art Store in The Frame.
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Samsung Electronics Celebrates the Grand Opening of Virtual Production Stage Powered by The Wall in Partnership With CJ ENMBy STF News
Samsung Electronics today celebrates the grand opening of a virtual production stage in collaboration with leading entertainment company in Korea, CJ ENM. The studio’s real-time virtual experience is powered by connected cameras and Samsung’s cutting-edge Micro LED technology, The Wall (Model Name: IWA).
The partnership, first announced in July 2021, leverages the customizable, modular technology of The Wall and CJ ENM’s globally renowned television and film content production. The opening of this studio in Paju, Korea demonstrates momentum from both companies toward the next generation of video production technology, aimed at satisfying a range of customers in the increasingly fast-paced world of entertainment.
“We are delighted to announce the opening of this virtual production stage in partnership with CJ ENM, a company at the forefront of media and entertainment,” said Hyesung Ha, Executive Vice President of Visual Display Business at Samsung Electronics. “We are excited to see the innovation that this new space will produce, bringing the latest content to life like never seen before on our incredible display, The Wall.”
The CJ ENM virtual production stage will present Samsung’s innovative Micro LED technology with The Wall’s impressive screen measuring over 1,000 inches in a custom oval display of 20 meters in diameter and 7 meters in height. The IWA model display supports a resolution of 30,720 (32K) x 4,320 (4K). This real-time, virtual set powered by Samsung’s Micro LED displays and connected cameras will reduce the image compositing needs and save time and production costs. In addition, an IFR2.5 ceiling display has been installed, with the IFR 2.5 Plug Wall displayed on the other side of the IWA. 360-degree video shooting is also possible thanks to the main screen, ceiling and Plug Wall.
The Wall’s specifications are customizable to fit the unique requirements of the content creators and space, including ceiling installation in convex or concave design. The screen enhances visual expression with vivid colors, HDR10, HDR10+ and cinema LED picture quality and details. The features enabling reimagined content production include dedicated studio frame rates, including 23.976, 29.97 and 59.94Hz, for seamless video sync.
The Wall is designed for easy management and peace of mind in any environment due to the ability to manage and make color adjustments remotely as well as the dust and contamination-resistant LED protective films. In partnership with CJ ENM, Samsung is delivering on its commitment to offer innovative solutions ready for the next generation of content production.
About CJ ENM
CJ ENM is a leading entertainment company originated from Korea. Since 1995, the company has engaged in a wide array of businesses across the industry spectrum including media content, music, film, performing arts, and animation, providing its top-notch original content to various media platforms. CJ ENM has created, produced and distributed globally acclaimed contents including Oscar-winning film Parasite, Tony Award-winning musical Kinky Boots, record-breaking Korean box office hits Roaring Currents, Extreme Job, Ode to My Father, along with sought-after television series such as Mr. Sunshine, Guardian: The Lonely and Great God, Grandpas over Flowers, I Can See Your Voice and more. To offer the best K-Culture experiences worldwide, CJ ENM presents KCON, the world’s largest K-culture convention & festival celebrating Hallyu and Mnet ASIAN MUSIC AWARDS (MAMA), the world’s No.1 K-pop music awards. With regional offices in Asia, Europe and the U.S., CJ ENM currently employs over 3,600 people. For more information, please visit: http://www.cjenm.com.
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[Interview] The Frame Art Store Offers a 5,000-Year History of Korean Art Through Partnership With the Leeum Museum of ArtBy STF News
Since it opened in 2004, the Leeum Museum of Art has earned a reputation as a cultural space where traditional, modern and international artworks that span a range of eras and styles are brought together. After the pandemic required it to close for nineteen months, the renovated museum has now reopened with new exhibits that include advanced technological displays which provide enhanced viewing of its expansive collection.
As technology continues to enter the art world in ways that haven’t been seen before, the display and creation of digital art are becoming increasingly common. Amid this climate, Samsung Electronics has partnered with the Leeum Museum of Art to promote the convergence of art and technology and allow people to experience 5,000 years of history with a curated collection in the Art Store on The Frame.
Samsung Newsroom reached out to Kwang-bae Lee, a curator at the Leeum Museum of Art, to get the inside scoop on the museum’s reopening, its collections and its collaboration with Samsung.
Transcending Time and Space With Artworks That Span Eras and Styles
▲ Exterior view of the Leeum Museum of Art
The Samsung Foundation of Culture established the Leeum Museum of Art in Hannam-dong, Seoul, Korea in 2004 in order to preserve its cultural assets and share them with the public. It was designed by acclaimed architects, Mario Botta, Jean Nouvel and Rem Koolhaas, and is highly regarded for its architectural value and harmonious design which blends with nature. With its unfailing dedication to holding exhibitions and showcasing its expansive collection, the museum now has one of the most broadly representative and varied collections in South Korea. Today, the Leeum is known as an open museum where various artistic styles, from traditional Korean art to vibrant and modern contemporary pieces from both Korea and abroad, can coexist. The museum has also been utilizing digital technology in its exhibits for the past ten years with this technology allowing, old artworks to be displayed in new and exciting ways. In this way, the Leeum seeks to head toward the future while not forgetting about the past. The museum is currently using a variety of state-of-the-art devices for both exhibition and education purposes.
▲ The interior of the Leeum Museum of Art
During the renovation period, the Leeum launched new permanent exhibits featuring both traditional and modern artworks. It also revived a special exhibition entitled “Human, 7 questions”, which is designed to offer visitors a chance to reflect on humanity as the source of art and contemplate the meaning of human existence during times of crisis. It has also installed a massive Media Wall in its lobby, allowing users to appreciate the artwork of Jennifer Steinkamp upon entering the museum.
“Following the Leeum’s reopening, people seem to be paying special attention to the new collections and special exhibitions we have opened,” said Lee. “I am excited to have visitors come in and see the new and improved space for themselves as they enjoy the full experience the renovated museum offers.”
Samsung and Leeum Usher in a New Era of Digital Art
The partnership between Samsung Electronics and the Leeum is also playing an important role in the ongoing unification of art and technology. Thanks to the fact that works curated by the museum are included on The Frame, users can now view them not just outside of the museum, but across the world. As Korean culture continues to grow more popular and expand into new countries, the introduction of this collection on the Art Store opens new opportunities for users around the world to experience the beauty of Korean traditional art.
▲ Lidded Bowl (National Treasure), 11th-12th century (Goryeo Dynasty)
Curators spent a great amount of time and effort selecting a collection that shines a light on the artistry and aesthetic of Korean art for display on The Frame. Because of this, viewers can now enjoy beautiful patterns on metal, subtly colored pottery and vibrant paintings from the comfort of their homes.
“Technology allows visitors to appreciate finer details in an artwork – whether it is a picture, a text, or a voice – that they may not have noticed before,” Lee said. “As technologies continue developing, our appreciation and understanding of art will expand beyond what we could ever have imagined.”
▲ Daoist Immortals, Kim Hong Do, 1776 (Joseon Dynasty)
Samsung Electronics and Leeum have been cooperating on using technology to promote art since the museum opened in 2004. Beyond digital art displays, this partnership has also demonstrated how digital archives can play an important role in preserving historical legacies.
“In this era, when we have access to abundance of masterpieces, the best of art and technology have to come together to complement one another,” Lee commented. “We hope our collaboration with Samsung will eventually come to be regarded as a masterpiece in and of itself.”
The collection of artworks curated by the Leeum is available in the Art Store on The Frame today.
Check out some of the Leeum’s top picks for The Frame below.
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[Interview] Whanki Museum X The Frame Art Store – A Partnership That Brings Us Into the Artistic World of Abstract Master KIM WhankiBy STF News
Samsung’s The Frame Art Store not only offers customization to fit any home décor and stunning QLED picture quality, but also transforms the user’s display into a window to the world. In October, the Art Store is introducing its partnership with Whanki Museum and the collection of world-renowned artist Kim Whanki.
As a pioneer of Korean abstract painting, Kim Whanki created his unique and characteristic art with refined, formative expression that is based on Korean lyricism. He was recognized for his artworks in centers for modern art that include Paris and New York.
Samsung Electronics has been partnering with Whanki Museum since 2018 to introduce a range of Kim Whanki’s artworks to global customers and provide easier access to Korean modern art.
Samsung Newsroom reached out to Whanki Museum curator Min-A Sung to talk about how art can serve as a medium for both communication and empathy.
Fostering Artistic Energy and ‘Art For All’
▲ Exterior view of Whanki Museum
Whanki Museum, established in 1992, creates a variety of artistic and cultural content through the research, exhibition and publication of the work of contemporary artists. The museum also provides educational programs and seeks to embody the philosophy of ‘Art for All’ by running a range of programs that expose disadvantaged groups to art and culture. “Whanki Museum will become an open venue for facilitating communication and building empathy based on artistic energy,” says the museum representative. “The partnership with The Frame Art Store provides increased opportunities for us to share our culture and art.”
▲ Inside Whanki Museum
How Samsung Communicates With Global Consumers Through The Frame Art Store
The museum representative also mentions that the ways people consume art are changing. “Art now influences our day-to-day lives,” they say. “In order to keep up with these shifts, we need to introduce new ways for people to experience art, and try to partner with experts to combine art and IT technology.”
▲ Morning Star, 1964
The representative adds that they have high hopes for the collaboration between the museum and Samsung. “Vivid color and contrast, which deliver a refined sense of rhythm, are key aspects of Kim’s artistic style,” they say. “The Frame’s QLED 4K display is the perfect medium for his work to be showcased to viewers around the world.”
With Quantum Dot technology that allows more than a billion colors to be displayed at 100% color volume, The Frame allows artistic intent to come through vividly on a bright screen with accurate color reproduction.
Master KIM Whanki’s Artistic Vision Realized on The Frame
Whanki Museum has introduced ten of Kim’s major works to The Frame Art Store since 2018. This has allowed users to enjoy major works such as Deer and Eternity Song, as well as a variety of pieces that were not easily accessible to the public before.
▲ 12-V-70 #172, 1970
In addition to displaying Kim’s artworks, The Frame Art Store also provides background information on the pieces. “The curatorial department has created descriptions for each artwork to provide resources that deliver a range of perspectives and introduce Kim’s artistic vision to more people,” relates the representative. “We hope the detailed explanations provided by Whanki Museum will help users experience the pieces in vivid and stunning quality, just as though they were viewing them in a gallery.”
The Frame Art Store offers a comprehensive, ever-expanding collection of artworks to satisfy customers’ needs and match any environment or atmosphere. Its catalog now includes around 1,500 artworks from a range of periods and styles that were sourced from 40 famous museums and galleries and are displayed in exceptional 4K resolution.
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