Presented by Plus Collaboratives and part of Singapore Design Week 2022, Re-Route Festival 2022 encourages you to re-explore exotic Little India with a different perspective.
Deepavali is around the corner and with that, Little India will soon be the place to head to for festive lights and historical celebrations.
But before that, how about reacquainting yourself with one of Singapore’s most vibrant ethnic precincts? From September 16 to October 9, Re-Route Festival 2022 presents an alternate storytelling version of colourful Little India for immersive, different exploration, a version interpreted through the lens of design.
Conceptualised by Mervin Tan and Cheryl Sim of Plus Collaboratives, and supported by the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) and DesignSingapore Council, this three-week placemaking festival features a plethora of activities from food tours to design experiences, to workshops and collaborative events with Little India businesses. All for the purpose of encouraging visitors to re-explore the Little India historical district with a new perspective.
The many highlights of the festival include:
1. Re-Route Lookout Tower @ Lembu Square
Lembu Square is one of the “hearts” of Little India and is famous for its many surrounding restaurants, shops, and weekend crowds. By ascending this scaffolding tower, which rises almost 10 metres tall, you can enjoy sweeping panoramic views of the entire precinct. In the spirit of the festival, a different perspective of a long-familiar hotspot.
While at the Tower, don’t forget to have a go at the makeshift table tennis tables too.
2. New Wonderland and Curiosity Capsules (Next to Great World City Main Entrance)
Before the days of affordable electronic entertainment, New World Amusement Park was the place to head to for fun and thrills. New Wonderland brings back this adventurous playground with design creations and a huge, huge Gachapon machine.
Simply exchange a ticket found in the festive kit for a spin at the Gachapon machine to win a Curiosity Capsule. Each capsule contains a unique interpretation of lesser-known Little India establishments or locations, specially drawn for the placemaking festival by illustrator Valerie Khong.
3. Re-Route Sporting Club @ Kinta Road
Do you know that the Singapore Sporting Club began at Farrer Park, which is just a stone’s throw away from Little India? This festive tent pays homage to the historical club and showcases the Little India experience through the eyes of modern designers. Bring home a piece of history with the various exclusive memorabilia on sale!
4. Gastro Intersections – Gastronomic Journey with Chef Drew Nocente and His Culinary Reinterpretations (SGD 78/- per pax)
How would an Australian chef interpret the many exotic, bold flavours of Little India? What unique pairings would he create? This two-hour food walk, with double sessions on Saturdays, brings together Eastern and Western tastes while honouring the heritage of both.
5. Cowbells and Cattails – Sound installations by Sonic Artist Li Chuan
Nowadays, it’s well-known that smell is often a stronger trigger for memories than sight. But do you know that sound is frequently capable of the same effect too?
These unique circular assemblages by sonic artist Li Chuan will instantly transport you to the era when bullock carts and cows roam the streets of Little India. They are also inspired by the Bahasa Melayu phrase Di-Serang Dengan Gong, or to “attack with a gong.” The phrase is believed to be one of the origins of the name “Serangoon.”
6. Other Than Prata: A Little India Foodwalk (SGD 68/- per pax. Hosted by Let’s Go Tour Singapore)
If you think ethnic food at Little India is just prata and biryani, think again! This foodwalk introduces lesser-known delicacies sold in the district. Some might be unfamiliar even to Singaporean foodies.
Re-Route Festival 2022 also features various artsy installations at different locations of Little India, workshops, photo tours, and food tastings. Check out the official website for details and locations of design activations and programmes!
Do consider purchasing a festive kit too. It comes with mini collectibles and a stack of discount vouchers. The vouchers will remind you of monopoly money.
Part of Singapore Design Week 2022 and a Project by Plus Collaboratives
As mentioned above, Re-Route Festival 2022 is part of Singapore Design Week (SDW) 2022. Lasting from Sep 16 to 25, this year’s SDW focuses on exploring design through three festival pillars:
- Design Futures: Interpreting design of the future and the future of design through the lens of forward-looking Singapore.
- Design Marketplace: Uncovering global lifestyle trends with a spotlight on Southeast Asia.
- Design Impact: Creating a better world by inspiring thoughtful design that addresses society’s biggest questions.
Plus Collaboratives, or PLUS, is an award-winning interdisciplinary group that designs, curates, and develops experiences for clients. Through a data/research-based approach that includes curating and creating an event, researching and developing spaces, and conceptualising visual communication strategies, PLUS delivers client messages by creating unique experiences through photography and videography.
Since its inception, PLUS has successfully customised design experiences for various government bodies and private companies too. These include People’s Association, Chanel, Krisflyer, Wildlife Reserves, and Fujifilm Business Innovation.
PLUS is furthermore the recipient of several prestigious local and international awards. For example, The Drum Awards 2022, iF Design Awards 2022, Indigo Design Award 2022, A’Design Awards 2022, Fujifilm Innovation Print Awards 2021, and Singapore Good Design Mark 2021.