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3 minutes with Danielle Tay


‘I need not much, only my imagination’, 2017 by Danielle Tay; Acrylic & Gouache on Paper

The third piece in a series which ruminates on the idea of mental space, local contemporary artist, Danielle Tay’s latest work ventures into the internal mind space that we create for ourselves—one uninhibited by structures and conventions; one that we call our imagination. Formed using a collage of hand-painted cutpaper illustrations, she reminds us of the beauty and wonder of our imagination.

1.     Why are you exhibiting at SPRMRKT Daily?

I am exhibiting at SPRMRKT Daily as it is a wonderful space that invokes calmness and mindfulness. I love exploring the unique range of products they have in store and enjoy the fact that it provides a quiet escape for the city dweller, for one to refuel. I feel that the work I am presenting resonates with SPRMRKT’s Here\Now goals to inspire mindfulness in the things that we do and I hope that it will bring delight to the patrons of SPRMRKT Daily. 

2.     Your art have typically featured against a lighter background, why have you chosen to go dark this time?

I chose to go dark because of what I envisioned for this piece which was to depict the night sky. There is a mysterious and quiet quality about the night that intrigues me. My past works usually have a lot of white space within them and the forms floated on the surface of the wall without a background. In my recent works, I wanted to create pieces which filled the frame more.

3.     All the paper and patterns used in this piece was individually hand-painted, do you see yourself a painter?

Yes definitely, I was trained as a painter and very much still approach my work from this perspective as well. I am constructing a painting even though the method is that of collage. I enjoy the qualities of paint, the handmade marks of the hand and I try to instil more of these into my work.


PC: Danielle Tay

4.     Who inspires you?

Frank Stella, Henri Matisse, Paul Klee, David Hockney, Edouard Manet.

 5.     What inspires the symbolisms in your art?

Metaphors related to nature and about nature, culture (for example, how animals are associated with different meanings within different cultures), items which I have collected sometimes feature in my works too.


PC: Danielle Tay

6.     The title you have chosen for this piece is “I need not much, only my imagination”. How has using your imagination help you through everyday life?

Imagination for me is a reminder of potential and possibilities; it helps me to have a positive mind set.

 7.     You have said that you plan your artwork in black & white and have alluded to only choosing the final colours intuitively, that’s pretty amazing. Are there any colours you tend towards? What makes them special/your favourite?

I am absolutely obsessed with colour and am always intrigued by fascinating colour combinations I see around me. I go through different phases with the colours I select and think that each one is beautiful and special in its own way. I do tend towards blue, most works feature this colour in at least one shade. 


PC: Danielle Tay

8.     What are you working on next?

I am working on a new series of works in paper, wood and possibly metal leading up to my solo exhibition with Chan + Hori Contemporary in October this year.

9.     Finally, Singapore being a major dining capital in Asia and around the world, what are some of your favourite food?

This is a challenging question to answer as it is not easy to pick just a few! Off the top of my head, all types of Italian pasta dishes, roasted veggie wraps, burritos, katsudon, sukiyaki and pho. My local favourites are nasi lemak, fu jian mian, fish bee hoon soup and popiah. 

Fujian Mee or Hokkien Mee is a local delicacy made using fragrant stock, yellow noodles, vermicelli and prawns. Credit: misstamchiak

Fujian Mee or Hokkien Mee is a local delicacy made using fragrant stock, yellow noodles, vermicelli and prawns. PC: misstamchiak

‘I need not much, only my imagination’ by Danielle Tay will be displayed from now till 25th July 2017 at SPRMRKT Daily.


Find out more about Danielle and browse through her portfolio via her official website, Facebook and Instagram. 

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