Ute Meta Bauer

Shaping the art discourse in Singapore and Southeast Asia

As founding director of the Centre for Contemporary Art (CCA) at Nanyang Technological University (NTU), where she is also a professor, Bauer has since 2013 established a programme integrating exhibitions, residencies and research. Recent group exhibition Trees of Life – Knowledge in Material was a case in point, conceived as part of a long-term, in-house research project accompanied by a series of talks and discussions. As founder of NTU’s MA in Museum Studies and Curatorial Practices, the first of its kind in Southeast Asia, Bauer is also shaping how the region’s art will be framed in the future. Indeed, as the West adjusts to the idea that the story of modern and contemporary art might have more than one narrative strand, Bauer is well placed to suggest how they might be woven together. That this isn’t as straightforward as some of her Western peers seem to think is suggested by the title of the section she curated at this year’s Kuandu Biennale in Taipei: ‘The Impossibility of Mapping (Asia)’.