Toa Payoh mural: a collaborative effort with students, artist

As part of our on-going community outreach to raise marine conservation awareness in the heartlands, S.E.A. Aquarium Society recently created a mural in one of Singapore’s oldest and most populated public housing estates – Toa Payoh.

This collaboration with the People’s Association brought together local artist Dan Wong of A Good Citizen and 15 students from the Art Elective Programme at CHIJ Secondary (Toa Payoh), to create a marine conservation-themed mural at Block 192 Toa Payoh Lorong 4.

Titled Healthy Ocean, Healthy Us, the mural spans 10 metres wide and almost 3.1 metres tall at the highest point. The whole project took five months of planning and execution, and three days to complete the mural.

On 27 May 2017, the day of completion, Dr Ng Eng Hen, Minister for Defence and MP for Bishan-Toa Payoh GRC, visited the team at the mural site.

Kelly Timmins, Senior Manager of Conservation and Education at S.E.A. Aquarium, explains the concept of the mural to Dr Ng.
Students from the Art Elective Programme at CHIJ Secondary (Toa Payoh) sharing with Dr Ng their experience painting the mural
Dr Ng adding some fish silhouettes to the mural

Lead artist Dan Wong has previously painted murals for organisations such as Viddsee and the People’s Association. This mural was his first marine conservation themed project.

“I became a certified diver two years ago. Experiencing marine life underwater is totally different from watching a documentary on TV. It’s amazingly beautiful. It would be a terrible shame if we humans were to destroy it through our bumbling efforts. If there is an opportunity to tell people about the marine world through my illustration skillset, I’d be very happy to do so.”

Dan guiding the students from CHIJ Secondary. Image credit: CHIJ Secondary (Toa Payoh)

On the inspiration behind his mural design, Dan said:

“During my visit to S.EA. Aquarium, I was introduced to the hammerhead sharks, manta rays, as well as countless other saltwater and freshwater creatures. I also love the smaller multi-coloured fish, from the parrotfish, jacks and trevallies to the super cute boxfish. Since beauty can be found from the smallest to the largest sea creatures, I decided to showcase these different fishes in the mural.”

You can see more of Dan’s artworks at www.agoodcitizenobeys.com. Here’s a timelapse video of the mural being created.

This mural was timed to coincide with World Oceans Day celebration at S.E.A. Aquarium, to amplify the importance of healthy oceans, and how it affects the health of planet Earth as a whole. Later this year, a second mural will be painted in Bishan, another populous housing estate. Stay tuned to our blog for details.

Click here to learn more about S.E.A. Aquarium Society

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