This wet market scene is the 5th of 6 scenes I conceptualised way back in 2016 to paint as murals in Chinatown. It is located at the gable wall of 30 Temple Street, Singapore’s Chinatown. I self-initiated the project following the warm public reception to the murals at Everton Road and Tiong Bahru. I called it “Dreams of Chinatown 牛车水昔日情怀“ to pay tribute to the old Chinatown I grew up in with fond memories in the 1970s/80s.
I painted this three storey high mural over 24 very wet days, and hot too at times. On the ground level, it depicts a traditional kopitiam, a dried seafood cum soy sauce shop, hairdresser, facial services along the five-footway, and a wet market scene selling vegetables, fish, and even snakes and monitor lizards. On the second level, I dressed up the real windows with laundries and their stuffs like overhanging birdcages, vegetables, baskets and potted plants. On the third storey, I painted a larger than life uncle pouring tea from his teapot into cups below. The overall vibe is a busy and whimsical scene. I hope visitors will feel they are transported into another world!
You can watch the final week of the painting process in this video created by Chen Chee Meng, who filmed me for the entire final week.
You can also read the interview from this Mothership article.