PASSING TIME by Lui Hock Seng


Prints from the exhibition ‘Passing Time’ are still available. Please email us at if you would like a catalogue.

This book is a collection of some 80 images captured by 81-year old self-taught photographer Lui Hock Seng. These black and white photographs from the 1960s to 1970s present a slice of Singapore’s pictorial history. The book includes an introduction by Objectifs curator Ryan Chua, an essay on the history of pictorial photography in Singapore by curator Charmaine Toh, and an essay about the historical and cultural significance of Mr Lui’s images by Yu-Mei Balasinghamchow.

Mr Lui’s interest in photography started in the 1950s. A car mechanic by profession and a photographer by vocation, Mr Lui was an avid participant in photography excursions organised by photo clubs and his friends. He would even take photos while cycling to work, shooting life by the Merdeka Bridge.

Like many photographers of that period, his subjects of interest ranged widely from streetscapes, to portraits, from architecture to industry. The images are exemplary of pictorial photography, the dominant photography art practice at the time, and provide insight into the beginnings of modern-day Singapore. In its emphasis on composition, light, technical skill and individual expression, pictorial photography saw many photographers exercise extensive control over the image-making process, from capturing the subject to manipulating the outcome in the darkroom.

Although Mr Lui has not pursued photography professionally, he has taken part in several photo competitions over the years, winning awards and was even accepted as an Associate of The Royal Photographic Society (ARPS) of Great Britain (1963). Most recently, he won a 3rd prize (Colour) at the Kampong Glam Community Club (2016). He continues to take photographs to this day. 

50 in stock

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BY Lui Hock Seng
COUNTRY Singapore
YEAR 2018
DETAILS 25cm x 25cm; 100 pp

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