Community Arts and Culture Initiatives in Singapore : Understanding the Nodal Approach book cover
1st Edition

Community Arts and Culture Initiatives in Singapore
Understanding the Nodal Approach

ISBN 9780367527891
Published April 29, 2022 by Routledge
302 Pages 13 Color & 35 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

What Can Space Do for the Arts?; What Can Arts Do for Space?; and What Can Arts and Space Do for the Community?

Through the lenses of creative placemaking and neighbourhood arts ecology, Trivic re-examines the position of community arts in the spatial, social and cultural landscape. Emphasising urban design considerations of complex interdependent relationships between arts, space and people, he re-explores the role of community-based arts activities in shaping urban neighbourhoods, enriching public life and empowering communities. This is divided into an analysis of spatial opportunities for the arts in the neighbourhood; and a study of the impacts of bringing arts and culture activities into local neighbourhoods and communities, using Singapore’s nodal approach as a developed case study. Using spatial opportunity analysis, the book demonstrates a step-by-step procedure for identification and evaluation of the neighbourhood spaces that work best for community arts and culture activities. In the study of impacts, Trivic proposes a holistic framework for capturing and evaluating the non-economic impacts of arts and culture, on space, society, well-being, education and participation.

An invaluable template for arts event organisers and artists to assess and maximise the outcomes of their creative efforts in local neighbourhoods, as well as an important reading for students and practitioners of neighbourhood planning, urban design, and creative placemaking.

Table of Contents

1. Community Arts and Culture – The Big Picture  2. Impacts of Arts and Culture: What Impacts and How to Measure?  3. Neighbourhood Arts and Culture Impact Assessment (NACIA)  4. Spaces for the Arts - What Can Space Do for the Arts?  5. Activation of Space through the Arts - What Can Arts Do for Space?  6. Arts and Community: What Can Arts and Space Do for the Community, and vice versa?  7. Neighbourhood Spatial Opportunities for the Arts – Singaporean Heartlands  8. Impacts of Arts and Culture – Learning From Singapore  9. Conclusion - Supporting Community Arts and Culture Development and Building Creative Neighbourhoods

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Zdravko Trivic is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Architecture, School of Design and Environment (SDE), National University of Singapore (NUS). He works closely with CSAC (Centre for Sustainable Asian Cities) and CARE (Centre for Ageing Research in the Environment), SDE, NUS, where he leads several research projects related to multi-sensorial urbanism, health-supportive and ageing-friendly urban space and neighbourhood design, community participation and creative placemaking.


"This book explores the relationship between the arts and culture in the context of community and place, and proposes a valuable tool to assess the non-economic impacts of arts engagement. What is unique about this book is the granularity of the focus. Many authors have addressed the arts in public places, but Trivic breaks down the application of community art to the level of individual and distinct neighbourhoods, using Singapore as a collection of five relevant cases. Support from the government of Singapore to bring arts and culture to all its citizens, wherever they may be, through a ‘nodal approach,’ is in contrast to many settings, particularly in Western countries, where market-driven decisions appear to block widespread dissemination of public art. Trivic identifies ways to evaluate spaces and nodes in neighbourhoods, beyond formal art venues, that offer the best opportunity for art and cultural activity. This involves decentralization of decision-making with local grass-roots organizations, and enables the cultivation of an arts and culture ‘ecology’ of sorts that fits their unique local circumstances. This volume should be of interest to urban planners, architects, artists, civic leaders, community activists, arts and cultural organizations, students, and anyone concerned about the quality of life in our cities. We deserve rich and varied public art to culturally enhance the urban experience. Trivic has provided us with an especially helpful guide." – D. Kirk Hamilton, PhD, FAIA; Professor of Architecture, Texas A&M University