Painting a Shared Future

Painting a Shared Future is a painting project aimed at portraying the dreams of both Singaporeans and migrant workers through art pieces drawn by them. Through this, we hope that both communities can better understand and appreciate each other, and also see the similarities between dreams shared by the two communities. Our goal was to help bridge the gap between the two communities. In addition, it seeks to gain insights into the lives of the migrant workers and how they feel, and foster a sense of mutual respect and understanding between migrant workers and Singaporeans.

For our project, we went down for a futsal festival for migrant workers from Bangladesh and Myanmar and hoped that they would be able to paint or draw during their rest periods in response to the question, "What is your dream?". There were multiple takeaways from the painting session.

The migrant workers were very distracted at the futsal festival because their motivation for attending the event was to play futsal. As such during the painting sessions, they would often look away at the games that were going on and paid less attention to the painting itself.

We also found that some of the migrant workers lacked confidence in drawing, as they have not drawn before. This lack of confidence hindered their expression of their dreams and also caused some of them to be unwilling to draw. For those who attempted, we realised that many were not comfortable with expressing something so intimate at such a session.

Using art as our choice of medium was also not optimal since many were unfamiliar with it. As such we were imposing challenges and barriers that impeded their expressions instead. This would therefore result in an unequal platform of expression between Singaporeans and the migrant workers, which would contradict our core objective.

However, this session has allowed us to learn and improve on our project, which eventually evolved into the Migrant Experience.