Masters Programme (Research)


Our Masters Students

MA (Research) AY 2020 – Student Profile

Jamin Wu
Evolution of Jean Léon Gérôme’s Colour Schemes
Jean-Léon Gérôme’s painting career stretched across the transition of French academic art to modernism in the mid to late 1800s. He transited from traditional neo-classicism to a new mode of history painting, innovating new compositional techniques, further influenced by his Oriental travels, as well as colour theory and colour technology advancements in the century. By juxtaposing his newer artworks with his older ones, there is a clear distinction, which the former has, what nowadays we call, “cinematic” quality.
Despite the apparent innovations Gérôme has made, discussion about his colour schemes have been largely neglected, overshadowed by the Impressionists as well as issues on Orientalism. This research is to identify, in the artist’s career, which paintings are career milestones in which an apparent innovation has been exercised, and therefore, analyse whether there is a change in colour scheme, and what are the schemes. The Munsell Colour system will be utilised for this study.​

Research Areas 
  • Orientalist and history painting
  • Colour theory​
Supervisor Assoc Prof Ng Woon Lam 
Email ​

Nor Jumaiyah Binte Mohamed Khamsin
​Contemporary Southeast Asian art practices post 90s.
Kelompok Seni Rupa Jendela

This aims of this research are to understand the production, reception and consumption of contemporary art practices of Southeast Asia through the study of Kelompok Seni Rupa Jendela, argubaly Indonesia’s most prominent contemporary art collective.

Research Areas
  • Jogja surrealism, Minangkabau aesthetic idioms, Islamic geometric abstraction, filmic experience of objects.
  • Theoretical and aesthetic challenges in curating and art criticism.
  • Presentation of art and cultural, historical objects under conditions and developments in a global contemporary art world.
Supervisor Asst Prof Michelle Lim
Email ​​

Yier Zhou
​The Development of Useful Templates for Documentary Storytelling

This Research Project is aimed at the study of a systematical design process to produce documentary films with high research contents.
In order to develop the templates, I am planning to use four documentaries as samples and a few other productions, starting with "Art Therapy in Sweden Kumla Prison" as first case study.

Research Areas
  • Documentary Film Making
  • Narrative Strategy
Supervisor ​Prof Ben Alvin Shedd
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Goh Hui Ying
The Aesthetics of the Nanyang Artists: a close study of their Colour Palette

Research Area:
  • Color Theory
  • Color Science: Human Eye Perception
  • Color System: Munsell Color System
  • Aesthetics in Color
  • Nanyang Artists
  • The development of Nanyang Paintings
  • Nanyang Colors
Supervisor Asst Prof Ng Woon Lam

Phay Han
Big Data & Machine Learning in Creative Advertising Applications

Technology is advancing at an unprecedented pace, with mobile and web connected devices providing data constantly on both macro and micro levels globally. Within the advertising industry, advertising executives design and craft novel approaches to tell compelling stories for brands. Leveraging the power of big data, and feeding that information through machine learning algorithms, self-learning artificial intelligence (AI) networks could potentially be able to provide valuable market-driven insights for creative direction.
My research aims to investigate the potential uses of big data and machine learning within creative applications. Specifically, there will be focus on how Artificial Intelligence systems powered by Big Data, can be designed to generate creative briefs. Through the findings of the research, if gaps are identified, is the potential of developing an enterprise SaaS (software-as-a-service) that could enhance the creative work process within the global advertising industry.

Research Areas:
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Neural Networks
  • Big Data
  • Machine Learning
  • Creative Advertising
  • Media Planning
  • Digital Media
  • Consumer Behaviour
  • Entrepreneurship
Supervisor Assoc Prof Jesvin Yeo

Vincent Liew Weh Siang
An investigation on documentary photography as an effective visual method: Documenting the religious practises of the Tenggerese

The research investigates the applicability of photography as a means for documentary work and its role in visual methods.

Research Areas:
  • Art History
  • Documentary Photography
  • Visual Methods
  • Cultural Elements
  • Religious Practises
Assoc Prof Oh Soon-Hwa
Asst Prof Michael Tan

Kong Wen Da Gideon
Critical Graphic Design as Artistic Research through Critical Pedagogy

This research clarifies and develops the practice and pedagogy of critical graphic design through drawing intersections with artistic research and critical pedagogy. As critical graphic design remains a contested term, this research proposes artistic research and critical pedagogy as two key relevant areas of study for developing a methodology and framework for understanding and practicing critical graphic design. A later part of this research examines and employs the researcher’s practice in publishing, design, and workshop-based activities, as examples illustrating as well as contributing to the understanding and applications of this framework and critical graphic design. Outside this thesis, I am also interested in developing visual mediums/methods as forms of artistic research in more specific ways and have been doing so for drawing and photography through independent workshops, writing, and research presentations.
Supervisor Assoc Prof Danne Ojeda

Tseng Ke Ting Christian
From Local Cinema to National: Stephen Chow's 'Competent Loser' and the Question of Hong Kong Identity

While cognitive psychologists have theorised stereotyping to be a natural (and even necessary) process, the concern here then, is how such arguments can reconcile with the sociological, ethical and artistic concerns surrounding stereotypization. Only by first addressing this can we begin to grapple with the complexities concerning misrepresentation; and this begins by accepting stereotypization as a necessary evil or, for a less loaded term, as an inevitability. With this in mind, this study seeks to analyse the directorial filmography of Stephen Chow through the lens of stereotype theory; and both evaluate and argue the means to which the stereotype can be challenged, and/or subverted even in its own inevitability.

Research Areas
  • Film Studies
  • Cultural Studies
  • Ethnic and Racial Studies
Supervisor Assoc Prof Sebastian Grobler

Tan Peng Chai Adrian
Re-reading The Artists Village through new contexts

The Artists Village (TAV) is re-read through a new methodological focus, where the artistic strategies of the artists collective are examined and relooked in new contexts. Through the research, a critical discourse opens up and encourages new narratives on Singapore art history through a study of collectivism and collaborative art.

Research Area(s)
  • Singapore and Southeast Asian contemporary art
  • Art Collectives in Southeast Asia
  • Participatory and collaborative art
  • Public Art and site-specific art
Supervisor Asst Prof Sophie Goltz

Yu Fengyao Jasper

It seemed that the role of food photography has evolved and grown to become a prevalent subject in the recent years. This research examines the different roles of photographed food from 5 different photographers across different time periods and the study of different visual impacts in culture coming from food photographs found on social media platform, Instagram.

Research Areas
  • Food in Art
  • Food Photography
  • Photography History
  • Visual studies on Food Photography
  • Visual Impacts of Food Photography
Supervisor Assoc Prof Oh Soon-Hwa

Chong Yee Cher Cheryl
Reintroducing the Chinese poetics through visual design

This research project aims to explore potentials of visual design through reinterpretation of Classical Chinese poetry. It sets out to stimulate interest, establish a deeper emotional connection and appreciation of Chinese poetry through different non-linguistic means. Furthermore, examines potentials of poetry and visual design in this digital era, to bridge traditional and contemporary art/design practices in Singapore and beyond.

Research Area(s)
  • Visual Design
  • Chinese Poetry & Philosophy
  • Poetic Expressions
Supervisor Assoc Prof Cindy Wang I-Hsuan

Chun Wan Ying Rachel
Rekindle Moments: Exploring Participatory Music, Intercorporeality and Well-being of Seniors in Dementia Day Care Centres

The ageing population in Singapore will give rise to the prevalence of dementia. A diagnosed person may be predisposed to social isolation, loneliness, stress, depression and a further decline in functional abilities. The oversight of the social aspects of care, quality programmes and engagement can hinder opportunities for self-expression and growth. Despite the rising demand for Dementia Day Care Services, there is little discussion on the interrelation of social networks and the options for activity participation in achieving of well-being.

My research seeks to enhance the routinely structured day activities by introducing a creative music-based programme, where I will exemplify on how the music-making experience can contribute to the well-being of participants while exploring a practice framework and the reciprocal relation of Intercorporeality on the well-being of seniors with dementia.

Research Area(s)
  • Ageing
  • Arts and Health
  • Dementia
  • Health and Well-being
  • Participatory Music-making
Supervisor Asst Prof Michael Tan

Lam Choon Khee
Exploration of the impact of Virtual Reality in the field of Installation Art.

Installation Art in particular has been evolving in parallel with Virtual Reality, a multi-dimensional technology which has opened up fresh options and facilitated complex and inventive forms of illustrative and immersive experience. This research aim to explore the aesthetics and theoretical impact of Virtual Reality on Installation Art and discovering new ways in which virtual reality can be exploited and examining new kinds of artistic expression.

Research Area(s)
  • Virtual Reality
  • Installation Art
  • Multi-dimensional technology
  • Traditional Art Conceptualisation
Supervisor Assoc Prof Benjamin Seide

Liu Qingqing
The Humanisation of Chinese Ghost Tales: Interpretation via Creative Graphic Illustrations

This research examines the Chinese ghost tales from the Six dynasties to the Qing dynasty which can be more representative of the humanisation during this period. A range of graphic illustrations will be created based on the analysis of selected tales and related Chinese folklore art elements.

Research Area(s)
  • Chinese traditional ghost culture
  • Chinese traditional literature
  • Folklore art
  • Graphic Illustrations
  • Visual language elements
Supervisor Assoc Prof Jesvin Yeo

Victor Ong
Artificial Intelligence in Visual Effects

Commonly regarded as the progressive "Special Effects" production in films due to digitization, Visual Effects (VFX) is a continuous expansion of the range of creation, manipulation and illusion possible due to the increased accessible number of tools and technologies capable for producing film effects that aim to achieve photorealism and believability. VFX has been utilized to create imaginative and realistic characters, or even replace actors and backgrounds using techniques that resulted in a natural look.

Looking to the future, Artificial Intelligence (AI) development is growing. These deep learning systems can greatly assist if not, replace existing VFX industry processes. The automation of rotoscoping in the case of Rotobot allows the reduction of industry-wide straight forwarded but laborious processes. Deep Video Portraits, also commonly known as Deep Fakes, will allow AI to process and transfer facial movements from a source actor to a still portrait image of a target actor with realistic results. This dissertation investigates the possibilities when AI applications can be utilised in the field of VFX - How will tedious or complex tasks be done differently to ease production time and improve efficiency or cost-effectiveness, leading to the outlook that most of the established VFX workflow will eventually be replaced. Does having accessible AI technology in the future mean anyone other than the VFX professional industry can create high-quality film effects? It is in this exploration which asks the question: How will the VFX industry change with AI?

Research Area(s):

  • Visual Effects
  • A.I
  • Computer Science
  • Deep Learning
  • Computer Vision

Supervisor Assoc Prof Benjamin Seide

Merlin Cheng Shao Meng
The Role of Immersive Media in Engaging Singapore’s History & Cultural Heritage: National Museum of Singapore as a Case Study (2010 – 2020)

This thesis will investigate the role of (digital) immersive media (IM); such as virtual reality (VR); augmented reality (AR); mixed reality (MR); immersive digital environment (IDE); among others; in the context of National Museum of Singapore (NMS) from around 2010 to 2020. It will acknowledge that digital IM is a small part of the larger exhibition design and planning strategy in NMS and uses ‘An Old New World’ exhibition as the starting point of discussion. The discussion will move on to the permanent exhibitions and the DigiMuse program and how initiatives like this influence and change the way NMS design an exhibition. Lastly, it will look at how IM plays a part in meaningfully engage, enrich, and excite museum visitors in learning about Singapore’s history and cultural heritage. 

Research Area(s) 
  • Immersive Media in Museums
  • Applied Virtual, Augmented, Mixed Reality
  • New Media in Museum Exhibition Design
  • Museography and Exhibition Planning
  • Digital Museum and Cultural Heritage

Supervisor Asst Prof Kristy H.A. Kang

Wu Kai Wen Ellice
Angelica Kauffman’s Self-Portraits and the Making of her Professional Identity in London, c. 1766-1781

This research will examine the self-portraits of Angelica Kauffman (1741-1807), which were integral to the way she established and asserted her professional identity as an artist. Kauffman was particularly successful working in London in the second half of the eighteenth century, at a time when most women could be accomplished in the arts, yet few were recognised as professional artists. Women’s accomplishments were performed as a representation of femininity, and this idea of an idealised feminine image and identity will be discussed in relation to Kauffman’s self-portraits.

Research Area(s) 
  • British art in the 18th century

  • Portraiture and self-portraiture

  • Gender and display 

  • Women artists and issues of identity​​​

Supervisor Prof. Michael Walsh

Ong Zi Feng
Forming a new taxonomy of the Arts. Using human senses as superregnum, medium as kingdom.

This research focuses in proposing a new taxonomy of the Arts by integrating Aristotelian five senses as the superregnum and medium as kingdom by using an adaptation of the phenetic taxonomy to provide a classification system that focuses on the constituent of artworks. This taxonomy system will aid researcher and artists in the process of analysing artworks by basing on the artwork’s fundamental principles and diminishing the significance of the production information of the artworks, only using these information as a mean to identify or cite the exact artwork. 

Research Area(s) 
  • The Arts

  • Classification Systems 

  • Human Senses​

Supervisor Asst Prof Bernhard Johannes Schmitt​

Fairuz Natasha Binte JUMARI
Ambiences for aesthetic contemplation in the films of Lav Diaz and Apichatpong Weerasethakul: Sound in “Slow Cinema” as experienced in Southeast Asia

The combination of long takes and ambient soundtracks have been attributed to the aesthetic of documentary filmmaking until the prevalence of “slow cinema”. Following its growing recognition across film festivals, the genre garnered academic interest, albeit with little scholarship focusing on the soundtrack as “commentators on slow cinema have been too reliant on the films’ visual characteristics, in that they attempted to understand slowness in purely visual terms.” (Çağlayan 2018: 32) Existing contributions to academic studies on sound in slow films have also been predominantly Eurocentric, covering film texts of that region where “language is rarely a disinterested tool…but rather it constitutes their very subject matter.” (Archer 2016: 133) This is a disjuncture to the slow cinema of Southeast Asia where verbocentrism in films is diminished, foregrounding instead the natural soundscapes. Hence, this paper aims to investigate the role of sound in redefining pacing conventions by assessing the potential for the inherently spatial and temporal ambient sounds to create a contemplative cinema, characterised by the films of Lav Diaz and Apichatpong Weerasethakul. It also studies the movement of slow cinema and how it positions itself in this region.

Research Area(s) 
  • Film Sound

  • Ambient Soundtracks 

  • Aesthetic Contemplation

  • Slow Cinema

  • Contemplative

Supervisor Prof Ross Adrian Williams