Bringing healing to the people through art
Not all heroes wear capes. Singapore artists Hun Ming Kwang and Quinn Lum, who are better known as the artist duo Hunny & Lummy, strongly believe in the role of artists as social healers.
The 28-year-olds met through Connection Without Sight, an instructional and participatory art workshop Hun organised a few years back, where they discovered that both had an interest in promoting mental health and wellness. They also shared the same belief in the power of art to help people express themselves fully and connect with their innermost thoughts and emotions.
Their shared passions led them to start the online platform ThisConnect in Sep 2020 to raise awareness of mental health and emotional wellness through art.
Hun says: “ThisConnect is a platform where we create experiential artworks to spark meaningful conversations about mental health, emotional wellness, and above all, the everyday struggles that we all face.
“Instead of telling people what mental health is and what mental health is not, we want to use art as a medium for them to experience it themselves. Art has no boundaries – there is no right or wrong way to interpret it, and that is where the power of art lies; everyone can experience art on their own terms.”
The online platform features experiential artworks integrated with healing, where artists and participants explored their deepest truths in the most vulnerable and raw forms. The featured works include I Feel You, a socially engaged participatory piece where strangers exchanged stories of loss, pain and vulnerability to promote empathy, tolerance, and listening without judgement, and Tipping Point, another featured footage of the performative act of blowing a balloon, a metaphor for suppressing the emotions wrought by everyday stressors.
Hun stresses that the showcases on the platform are not about the final product or work of art. “It’s the process of creating art that matters, because it engages a person’s physical, intellectual, emotional, even intuitive, and instinctive bodies to express that through their physical bodies,” he says.
The platform has drawn many participants due to its reflective nature, but for Hun, the most fulfilling part of the experience has been witnessing people make a difference to their mental wellness by embracing art.
He says: “It could be something as simple as the participants recognising, through the platform’s offerings, patterns in their lives that have not been serving them, or gaining insights about changes they would like to make in their daily lives.”
“Ultimately, if the work we do can stop just one person from committing suicide, I think we’ve done our job.”
Learn more about ThisConnect here.