In an ongoing art exhibition by Richard Lim, titled ‘Cover Story’, print media is made use of in order to examine the effect journalists and the media have on the common man.
In his exhibition, Lim shows three pieces, with each telling their own in-depth story.
The first and main piece, Strait Jacket “alludes to the way in which journalistic power operates in social life”. A straitjacket is used to restrain, and this piece is commentary on how newspapers and the media have the power to shape and restrain the opinions of the public, especially if a specific viewpoint is propagated. It is, after all, a strait jacket made out of newsprint. While the work references a specific newspaper, Richard Lim adds that his exhibition is not directed at any one specific media platform, but says instead, that the work “playfully [references] the newspaper’s name” in order to form this pun.
Richard’s second piece, titled Life Line, perpetuates an idea of “discipline and control, taking the form of a shirted mannequin coupled with a lifebuoy”. This is a collaboration with another artist, A’shua Imran. Instead of the lifebuoy serving its purpose of keeping a drowning person afloat, this one was a weight on the shoulders the mannequin. It was to showcase how ‘lifestyle reporting’ veers from its intended function and promotes material culture.
The last and most jarring piece features a toilet seat with the words “Budget” and “Business” on the back of the lid. Its aim, to emphasise how profits and economic growth often seem to be the main agenda of the media.
Towards the end of the exhibition, Richard Lim allows us privy to three collages not featured in the exhibition, yet all tied in with the existing works. They were another collaboration with artist Jeremy Hiah.
Richard Lim leaves patrons of his exhibition with a rather poignant quote to ponder over: “If you don’t read the newspaper you are uninformed; If you do read the newspaper you are misinformed – Unknown”.
The exhibition runs until the 25th of May.