Musical Fountain

Tan Teng Kee

First placed in Singapore: 1974

first placed in front of Plaza Singapura, at its launch. Later moved to Marina Bay, later destroyed.

First placed in Plaza Singapura, later moved to Marina Bay Park. Destroyed unfortunately...

Patron: DBS for Plaza Singapura

Before making way (along with many other works) for the planned Gardens by the Bay, this work far outshone its neighbors at the Marina City Park. It was unmarked, and also uncredited on the National Parks Board website, which discussing the other works in the park at some length. According to the catalogue of a retrospective show of the artist held at Sculpture Square in October 2001, this work was created for Plaza Singapura, as the result of an open competition. The artist won the competition for the work in 1973, and installed the piece on site in 1974. From an interview with the artist in the catalog:
"The commission was sponsored by the Development Bank of Singapore (DBS). It was to be displayed in front of a shopping centre called Plaza Singapura. I studied the environment, measured the size of the proposed pool and used metal to build an abstract form, using straight lines to build a model. My concept was to join two clusters of forms: one in front of the other. From a distance, the two forms appear like natural forms, like a mountain, summits high and low. It can appear as a landscape, as a scene that seems to be changing. I wanted to convey a sense of change and development. I sent it in for the competition and the judges selected my work."
See also this exchange from a 1991 interview with TK Sabapathy:
TKS: 'Are you still very interested in art in public places? Do you still think that it is relevant or important?'
TTK: 'I think it is important for the public environment. First we must look for a suitable environment to display sculpture; that is important. That is challenging work for me, a big project. I just want to mention about the first project which I did in 1974. At that time it was a closed competition and I was lucky to win the first one organized by the Development Bank. The judges selected my submission, but the managers of Plaza Singapura could not believe that my entry could be the winner; but they had to accept it as the judges had decided on it. So, the manager decided to test the entries on his own staff. Everyone including the clerks and the janitors were asked to view the first three winners and to select one from their own judgements. They were asked to cast their votes. Guess what! They still chose mine to be the overall winner. Is that not amazing?'
TKS: 'That is interesting and I am glad you disclosed that.'
See also the entry on Endless Flow, 1980.T.K. Sabapathy, Tan Keng Kee: an Overview, 1958-2000, Singapore: sculpture square, 2001
T.K. Sabapathy, Sculpture in Singapore, Singapore: National Museum Art Gallery, 1991.

Last updated: Dec-5-2020

Musical Fountain
additional photograph of the sculpture on this page
additional photograph of the sculpture on this page

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