Asian Civilisations Museum, Empress Place
Singapore Travel Blog› entry 9 of 13 › view all entries
November 20th, 2009 – by: almond72
The place to go for some quiet time within the city. Is it the snob appeal that brings me there ? The click of the soles of the shoes on the wooden floor ? The sight of items of long lost times ? The flitter of shadows in the dark halls ? The oohs & aahs of impressed visitors ? Or maybe I'm just scouting for my next hit. heh heh heh.
I'll get better pictures once I upgrade the camera. (don't hold your breath waiting though). Even with Christmas round the corner, Santa might just pop a cap in my head if he visits instead of giving me prezzies. He would probably tell the world That was his present to them and stop moaning about lack of boxes under their tree. (unless they also wanted more of the same)
This time round there was a special exhibition featuring items from Philippines.
I was just re-affirmed of my indeterminate nationality/features when went there. I got offered Korean, Japanese and English brochures. Very nice ! Am I that confusing to others ? Or am I confused myself ? So far, I've been identified as the following : Japanese, Korean (by many incl. a Korean restaurant owner), Thai, Indonesian, Chinese (as in from China - best of all, by one of their own).
Back to the museum, when you go in and want to spend some time there (maybe more than 3~4 hours), you can leave your non critical items in a locker. It's only 20 or 50 cents, depending on the locker size. Get change from the ticketing/reception if needed. That saves you from lugging your bag around or knocking over anything you can't afford to pay in this lifetime. It's too late if you smashed that bust from Central Asia and then start negotiating for a discount from the valuation of US$ 500,000 !! The lockers are just behind the reception area.
Main galleries start from the 2nd floor and have lots of audio visual guides. Your printed ticket serves as a barcode for the automated guide machines. Just slot part of it in and it will start yabbering at you.
Don't forget to visit the other galleries accesses via the doors to the side of the main gallery. To the left and right of the main gallery there are interesting collections there sponsored by private sector. There are also galleries located on the upper and lower floors too. Many people tend to miss such exhibits because they are in a rush (tour groups normally) or they missed the signs in the dark.
The photos I've uploaded are a small portion of what's in there. And, of course these are the items that piqued my interest most.
Corny ? Waste of time ? - if you like this kind of stuff, you will find it pleasant. If this kind of thing puts you to sleep, then screw it - Funan IT Centre/Mall is just a short 5 min walk away from Empress Place. You can get your fill of the latest gadgets and computer junk there. Just remember to come back in time for your tour bus. If you are totally screwed & left behind and have no idea how to get back to your hotel, ask the info desk at Funan Centre.
I found the lighting somewhat inadequate for some of the exhibits. It's too gloomy to see details, even for some of the big pieces. Maybe the light was out of focus ? For the textile & paper exhibits, I can surmise that it would fade / damage the item with continuous exposure. But for the wood / lacquer / painted items ? Would it be so bad ? Soft light might give better visual impact than a tiny spotlight mounted 15m away on the roof. Night vision goggles ain't a solution either. Given that my low light vision is much better than many others, they must have found it annoying to try to see some of the items on display. Maybe a headlamp on my next visit.....
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