Artist: Waheeda Jaffar
Medium: Acrylic On Canvas
Dimensions: 120cm (Width) x 60cm (Height)
About The Artwork
“Skins” depicts an issue that has always been present, whether lurking subtly in the shadows in the form of snide passing remarks or rearing its ugly head prominently in more direct hostile statements and actions. Even Singapore, fortunate enough to not have experienced severe cultural discrimination in recent decades, has begun to see a rise in racial bigotry. An increasing number of people have started to make clear their biased views on people of cultural backgrounds different from their own, be it views on foreigners residing in Singapore or even Singaporean citizens who simply do not share their skin colour. They have taken it upon themselves to publicly display their disdain for people culturally dissimilar to themselves, oblivious to the fact that the stereotypical frames that they try to box others in do not accurately fit them. This ostracism results in an isolation of separate groups; groups that oftentimes feel misunderstood because the categories they are put into simply do not describe them appropriately.
This feeling of isolation and ill-representation is portrayed by the various segregated rectangles of different colours that are out of their frames. The only perfectly-fitting frame is the one where all the colours are intermingling with one another. This frame represents a society where cultural stereotypes are abandoned and every group is viewed and accepted with the same open mindset; a society where everybody is free from prejudice regardless of race, language and religion.
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