The Vault: #3.2 For The Time Being

The Vault: #3 three

Three theatre designers
Three unique responses
Three installations
One play-text

The second of the series, #3.2 For The Time Being is an intimate sound installation in response to selected themes from the play Invisibility by Quah Sy Ren.

It takes an approximate 80 milliseconds for our brain to process all the relevant sensory input from our perceptions, before it experiences the “now”. As such, we are constantly living in the past, an 80 milliseconds of liminal disjuncture.

Set as a quiet transitional experience, the sound installation highlights the restlessness of this ephemeral and liminal state of “now”; and the meaninglessness and futility of living in the present. For The Time Being hopes to accentuate the dichotomy of being and nothingness by augmenting the sound of ice melting as a way to alienate and/or heighten meanings from our perceptions.

Visitors will engage in this discreet and metaphysical conversation brought about by chance, as a matter transits from one state to the other in time and space.

Event Details:
22 – 25 July 2015
5.00pm – 9.00pm (Wed – Fri)
3.00pm – 7.00pm (Sat)
*last admission 20min before closing time
Centre 42 Black Box
Admission is free. Register to secure entry.

About the Series:

In this series of three installations, the focus is brought to a theatre designer’s response to text. In the absence of a prescribed directorial vision, design collective INDEX connects directly with the play Invisibility, interprets its narrative and re-imagines it using their specialized language of design. As a term, the word Invisibility alludes to the absence of bodies on stage; as a subject, it relates to the nature of a theatre designer’s work in a conventional production.

#3.1 by lighting designer Lim Woan Wen was presented in May 2015. View a recording of the work here.
#3.3 by spatial designer Lim Wei Ling will be presented in September 2015. More details to come.

About the Text and the Playwright:

Invisibility, written by Quah Sy Ren, has been described as “a poignant tale about alienation and the search for meaning in modern urban society”. It was first staged (in Mandarin) by The Necessary Stage in 1996. The mandarin play was translated into English by Sim Pern Yiau. A browsing copy of the published play is available in Centre 42’s Book Den. View it here.

Playwright Quah Sy Ren is an associate professor in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Chinese division at Nanyang Technical University. His main research interests are in Chinese Literature and the history of Singapore Theatre. Quah also sits on the board of directors for Practice Performing Arts Centre and The Finger Players. In addition to Invisibility (1996), Quah has also authored other plays as well as written and edited several books.

About the Artists:

INDEX is a design collective winged under The Finger Players, comprising of spatial designer Lim Wei Ling, lighting designer Lim Woan Wen and sound artist/music composer Darren Ng. Finding common grounds in quiet aesthetics and subtractive work ethos, the collective focuses on design-centric installations and performances, using space, light and sound to weave meanings and narratives. While the three designers have been working together for a substantial number of years, the collective was kick-started in May 2013 with the performance installation IN:dex, presented under The Studio’s R.A.W series at the Esplanade Theatre Studio.

As a collective that focuses on design-centric installations and performances, INDEX is primarily interested in exploring the possibilities and potential of creating narratives using the elements of space, light and sound. In their third collaboration The Vault: #3 three, the three artists seek to experiment and further expand their vocabulary through developing a series of three entirely separate showcases based on one chosen script.

Find out more about INDEX and follow their development process of The Vault: #3 three here.

Read about their reflections on the process after the all three instalments were completed.

Find Out More!

VA3.1 Buttons1 VA3.1 Buttons2 VA3.1 Buttons3 VA3.1 Buttons4 VA3.1 Buttons 7

VA3.1 Buttons 9

VA3.1 Buttons 10


Sound Artist’s Notes

Click to read about Darren’s research process, observations and his charting of the sound score of melting ice!

FTTB Artist Notes

Missed it? Watch it here.

Click to view the documentation videos featuring highlights of the sound installation.

Alternatively, view snapshots of the behind-the-scenes and actual event happenings here.




Vault Event Logo

The Vault: #3 three revisits Invisibility, refreshes and retells the stories in them through the eyes of theatre design collective INDEX. #3.2 For The Time Being by sound artist Darren Ng is the second of three installations.

Find out more about The Vault programme here.