23 June 2022
SMRT Trains engages local art community to produce wall murals showcasing Singapore’s heritage in vicinity of train stations
- SMRT Trains today launched Comic Connect, a collaboration between Singapore’s pioneer rail operator and members of the local art community to install heritage-themed, comic-style wall murals across 35 SMRT-operated MRT stations island-wide. Comic Connect is one of the key activities to commemorate SMRT’s 35th anniversary this year.
- The first mural was unveiled at Toa Payoh station by guest-of-honour Senior Minister of State for Finance and Transport Chee Hong Tat, who is also the Member of Parliament in the Bishan-Toa Payoh Group Representation Constituency (GRC). Toa Payoh station was chosen as it is one of the first five stations to start MRT operations in Singapore in 1987. The Toa Payoh station mural features interesting stories about Toa Payoh’s significance as home to various milestones in Singapore history, including being the first town to be entirely designed and built by the Housing and Development Board (HDB). [Please click here for the mural]
- Showcasing the unique heritage and sub-culture of respective neighbourhoods, the murals invite commuters to feel the “kampong spirit” and to embrace SMRT-operated train stations as an integral part of their homes and community. The murals, which are created on vinyl sticker for durability and easy maintenance, also offer the community affectionate reminders of each neighbourhood’s key moments in history, such as the iconic Old National Library Building in the vicinity of City Hall station and Queenstown Library, the first branch library, near Queenstown station. By the end of 2023, the murals will be progressively installed across 35 stations, which have been chosen for their historical significance, among other factors.
- Mr Seah Moon Ming, Chairman, SMRT Corporation, said: “SMRT’s public transport service has played a vital role in the growth and development of Singapore. Over 35 years of service, we have connected communities and changed the way Singaporeans live, work and play. We hope these murals can bring to life the unique stories of the local communities and inspire our commuters and residents as we build our social cohesion and strengthen community resilience over the next 35 years.”
- Mr James Suresh, one of the artists who worked on the mural in Toa Payoh station and co-creator of the Mr Kiasu comics, said: “While researching this project, I discovered many interesting facts about Toa Payoh. It used to be a big swamp, hence the name Toa Payoh which is a combination of Hokkien and Malay words1. I also learnt about the famous immovable tree and went searching for it and was so thrilled to find it. All in all, it was a great learning experience and I hope residents will discover interesting facts about their town through our mural."
- For Comic Connect, SMRT will also be working with young talents from local art institutions School of the Arts (SOTA) and Visual Arts Centre, to create murals to educate, enlighten and excite.
1 “Toa” is Hokkien for big, and “paya” is Malay for swamp.