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Everyday Modernism: Architecture and Society in Singapore

Publisher: NUS Press
  • Description
  • About the Authors
  • A richly illustrated account of the development of Singapore’s modern built environment.
    Everyday Modernism is the first comprehensive documentation of Singapore’s modern built environment. Through a lens of social, cultural, and architectural histories, the book uncovers the many untold stories of the Southeast Asian city-state’s modernization, from the rise of heroic skyscrapers, such as the Pearl Bank Apartments, to the spread of typical utilitarian buildings like the multistory parking garage. It investigates how modernism, through both form and function, radically transformed Singapore and made its inhabitants into modern citizens. The most intensive period of such change, the author shows, happened in the 1960s and 1970s under the rise of a developmental state that sought to safeguard its new-found independence. The book also looks both earlier and later, however, ranging from the 1930s to the 1980s to cover a wider range of histories, building types, and architectural styles, expanding from the International Style and Brutalism into Art Deco and even a touch of Postmodernism. The book’s essays are richly illustrated with hundreds of archival images and illustrations, as well as contemporary photos by architectural photographer Darren Soh. By examining the evolution of the once exceptional into the typical and by learning how abstract spaces become lived places, the book traces how modernism has become part of everyday life in Singapore.

  • Jiat-Hwee Chang is an associate professor in the Department of Architecture at National University of Singapore.

    Justin Zhuang is a writer and researcher based in Singapore, and cofounder of writing studio In Plain Words.

ISBN: 9789813251878
Cover Type: Paperback
Year Published: 2022