to gather:
The Architecture of Relationships

to gather: The Architecture of Relationships examines the different ways in which we, residents of Singapore, share space — in our city, with one another, and with the rest of nature. The exhibition grew out of a desire to pull together stories on the ground. More than 80% of Singapore’s population live in housing developed by the
government. Given this context, the relationships within and between communities living in public housing neighbourhoods are the bedrock upon which many collective actions in this exhibition are built. These efforts, in turn, transform and reinvigorate the spatial environments they reference. 

The 2021 Singapore Pavilion features sixteen projects that represent the cross-section of local cultures and society. Singapore is highly urbanised and amenable. Against this cosmopolitan backdrop, spatial typologies such as hawker centres, community centres and housing development void decks are constant fixtures in facilitating and nurturing practices of sociability in the city. 

The curators are interested in bringing these modes of conviviality and inclusivity into the context of an exhibition. Hashim Sarkis, the Director of the 17th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia poses a prescient and important question: how will we live together? This question opens up a plethora of possibilities. The Singapore Pavilion addresses this through a community-led focus, and the built spaces that facilitate these gatherings. The hawker centre and the living/dining room of a public housing flat emerged as natural frames through which we could introduce uniquely Singaporean modes of gathering and coexistence.

The exhibition is connected by four main themes, which frame the various modes and scales of gathering.

Communing Relationships​:
We explore the preservation of collective histories. How do memories inspire new ways of coming together in present times?
Framing Relationships:
Centred around built structures, this section illustrates how different communities and individuals live and work together in a single space.
Uncovering Relationships​:
We emphasise embodied and multi-sensorial interactions amongst people and with our surroundings.
Imagining Relationships​:

We visualise the speculative future based on our conjoined relationship with digital technology.



Yap Lay Bee, Co-Commissioner, Group Director (Architecture & Urban Design), Urban Redevelopment Authority

Mark Wee, Co-Commissioner, Executive Director, DesignSingapore Council

Larry Ng, Prize Secretary (Lee Kuan Yew World City Prize) & Commissioner-General (Dubai World Expo 2020), Urban Redevelopment Authority

Erwin Viray, Professor and Head, Architecture and Sustainable Design, Singapore University of Technology and Design

Seah Chee Huang, President, (59th Council) Singapore Institute of Architects

Yang Yeo, Co-Chief Creative Officer, Hakuhodo Inc.


Teng Joo Chong, Director, Architecture & Urban Design Excellence 

Jeffrey Ang, Executive Architect, Architecture & Urban Design Excellence

Lee Lynn Wei, Executive Planner, Architecture & Urban Design Excellence 


Yeo Piah Choo, Director, International Relations & Corporate Services

Juliet Lim, Deputy Director, Communications

Serene Lim, Assistant Director, Marketing Communications


Puay-peng Ho, Head and Professor, Department of Architecture, National University of Singapore

Simone Shu-Yeng Chung, Assistant Professor, Department of Architecture, National University of Singapore

Thomas K. Kong, Associate Professor, Department of Architecture, National University of Singapore

Tomohisa Miyauchi, Professor of Practice, IE University School of Architecture and Design, Spain 

Sarah Ichioka, Director, Desire Lines


Joella Qingyi Kiu, Research Assistant, Department of Architecture

Shireen Marican, Associate, Desire Lines

Mary Ann Ng, Research Assistant, Department of Architecture


Simone Shu-Yeng Chung

Sarah M. Ichioka

Jacopo Benci

Joella Qingyi Kiu


Open Narrative

Zhang Weijin, Ee Jun Esli

Desire Lines

Sim Yi Shien


Fellow Design

Izyanti Asaari, Iffah Dahiyah, Dika Dhaniya, Hanis Isahak, Meghan Poh


Judith Fereday
Director, Camron PR


Atelier HOKO

Drama Box, ArtsWok Collaborative and Forest & Whale

DP Architects

Hyphen Architects + Brian Khoo + Mary Ann Ng

Lai Chee Kien

Lighting Planners Associates

Michael Budig and Oliver Heckmann, Singapore University of Technology and Design

Millennial Nomad Space

MKPL Architects

NUS-Tsinghua Design Research Initiative: Sharing Cities

Red Bean Architects

salad dressing

Studio DO: PULAU

Studio Lapis + Eugene Tan + Jerome Ng Xinhao

Surbana Jurong



Zulkhairi Zulkiflee, Charmaine Poh, Kimberly Kiong, Christopher Sim


Students of Curating Architecture (National University of Singapore)

Chen Xiyuan, Ge Jiwen Charlotte, Joshua Chiang, Keith Png Jun Jie, Lim Xin Jie Shirley, Ling Qinzhe, Ma Xueying, Soh Xian Hui, Tong Enlai, Victoria Tan

Aberdeen Seet, Desiree Tan Li Yu, Ge Luyao, Jo Ann Low, Jonathan Daniel Lau, Lim Qian Ping Annabelle, Nursafura binte Mohamed Ali, Ong Xian Shi Justin, Ow Yeong Jun Jie, Yang Qing, Zhang Shukai, Zong Yue


Abirami Murugappan, Akansha Aether, Charlie Lim, Chen Ying, Christopher Sim, Clara Lim, Dennis Png, Divaagar, Faz Ismail, Hui Juan So, Izwan Abdullah, Jiayu Ng, Lee Jia Qian, Lin Xueling, Mohd Fared Jainal (Teater Ekamatra), Shaza Ishak (Teater Ekamatra), Soh Kheng Hwee, Tan Seow Wei, Tulika Ahuja, Yoeng Shu Hwee, Zakir Ramlan