$34.47

Meet My Craftsman: Stella Tan of Thow Kwang Pottery Jungle

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Thow Kwang Pottery Jungle

85 Lorong Tawas

Singapore, 639823

Singapore

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Eventbrite's fee is nonrefundable.

Event description
Fancy painting a lantern or being part of a lion dance ensemble? Pick up some nifty skills from our country’s beloved practitioners.

About this Event

Remember those traditional joss sticks makers, rangoli artists and lion dance troupe members? Despite rising competition, many intangible cultural heritage practitioners remain passionate about their craft. Meet My Craftsman brings Singaporeans to visit nine of these craftsmen, and at the same time, have their hands at practicing them!

About Thow Kwang Pottery Jungle

Stella Tan’s family business can be traced back to the 1960s when her ancestor Tan Kim Seh purchased a dragon kiln at Jalan Bahar. The Jurong area, rich in white sedimentary clay, was a good spot for his business enterprise. In fact, the site had once been home to about 10 kilns in the early 1960s.

Mr Tan had brought his expertise in ceramics from a porcelain village in Shantou along the eastern coast of Guangdong, China, where he was born, to Singapore. He started selling latex cups, orchid pots and water jars in Singapore in 1965.

Today, his family works hard to keep his legacy alive. Their Thow Kwang Pottery Jungle is in fact, Singapore’s last operating dragon kiln. For their perseverance and value to the cultural landscape, the National Heritage Board awarded them the inaugural Stewards of Singapore’s Intangible Cultural Heritage Award in 2020.

About the Craftsman

Stella Tan shared with MCF2020 that she picked up the craft from her aunt when she was 17. To up her game, she trained under an instructor from Lasalle College of the Arts.

Running the kiln is hard work, she said. “You really need a lot of passion, love, patience and determination for it. My uncle, the business’ second-generation owner, has fought really hard to keep this place alive.” She explained that before the kiln is fired, she and her team spend two months preparing art pieces for the extreme temperatures ahead. Another few weeks are spent strategically packing the kiln with these individual items. Firing up the dragon alone, to temperatures of 1250 degree Celcius, is a 30-hour effort. When the job is done, the team takes about a month to scrub the soot off.

Despite these challenges, Ms Tan marches on positively with her work. After all, the Pottery Jungle has a special place in her heart. As a child, the giant bowls and jars on display, as well as surrounding jungle served as the perfect playground for her and her cousins who used to play many a game of hide-and-seek. With these memories close to her heart, Ms Tan said it is hard to tear herself away from the place.

Details of the Programme

  • Language: English
  • Dates:
    • 6 Dec (Sun) 2pm-4pm
    • 13 Dec (Sun) 2pm-4pm
    • 20 Dec (Sun) 2pm-4pm
  • Meeting place: 85 Lor Tawas Singapore 639823 (Nearest MRT Station: Boon Lay)
  • Please arrive 15 minutes before the stated meeting time for registration and temperature taking. Our facilitators will be wearing our event t-shirt.
  • Venue is wheel-chair accessible.
  • Limited Parking is available at the premise.
  • The workshop will proceed rain or shine.

What to bring?

  • Wear a mask and comfortable clothes (no Bermudas!)
  • Bring along hand sanitisers, disposable gloves, an umbrella and a bottle of water
  • Asthmatic individuals are encouraged to bring their inhaler.

COVID-19 Safety Precautions

  • All participants must wear a mask.
  • All participants must complete the Safe Entry, health declaration and temperature taking before the event.

Instructions for Participants

  • Participants must abide by the house rules set out by the host (eg. out-of-bound areas, use of toilet). Facilitators will brief participants before the start of the programme.
  • In lieu of the recent COVID19, participants will be required to take their temperatures and submit a health declaration form for contact tracing. Please do not attend the event should you feel unwell.
  • There will be no refund if you wish to cancel your tickets.
  • By agreeing to participate in the activity, participants will be responsible for any injury, loss or damage due to negligence of other actions on his/her part or that of children under his/her charge.
  • It is compulsory for a parent/guardian to accompany any child of or under the age of 12 children under his/her charge.

For updates:

  • Visit www.mycommunityfestival.sg for updates.
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Date and Time

Location

Thow Kwang Pottery Jungle

85 Lorong Tawas

Singapore, 639823

Singapore

View Map

Refund Policy

Contact the organiser to request a refund.

Eventbrite's fee is nonrefundable.

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