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BUILDING STORIES WITH ARCHITECTURE Photographs present an alternative picture of public housing neighbourhoods in Singapore


Instagrammers from Singapore document public housing neighbourhoods through stark and intriguing images.

Unlike conventional architectural photography, these accounts don’t merely showcase monumental architecture. They are a meditation on life in urban spaces. Though shot in vibrant neighbourhoods, the images are almost shorn of human presence. Visually, they illustrate geometry, colours, grids and the scale of architecture. But then the eye catches little signs of people – in a piece of clothing out to dry, a potted plant on a window, a decorative artifact on a doorway or a human shadow on a building wall. Filling the stoic frames with life.     


Nguan’s minimal – washed out images are like paintings in pastel colours. The award winning photographer’s work chronicles buildings, public spaces and people that all together tell a unique story of life in Singapore.  This quote from his website explains his exploration.

“Children draw houses unpredictably as they draw faces. No matter where they live they all draw the same house..” – Stewart Brand  

A photo posted by Nguan (@_nguan_) on

RG @tumblr ?

A photo posted by Nguan (@_nguan_) on

A photo posted by Nguan (@_nguan_) on



City Invader’s Instagram showcases wide shots of high-rises and building block exteriors interspersed with images of building interiors like elevators and staircases. Table Tennis tables appear like a leitmotif on his Instagram feed. 

Patriotic Storeys. #accommodation #publichousing #singapore #home #hdb

A photo posted by Low (@cityinvader) on



Blackmobil’s photographs shot from different angles often create a distorted perspective. By placing a person in wide spaces, he demonstrates an interesting sense of scale and form.

Shadow play #shotoniphone6s

A photo posted by Leslie Heng (@blackmobil) on

#Singap?re #WHParchitecture

A photo posted by Leslie Heng (@blackmobil) on


A photo posted by Leslie Heng (@blackmobil) on



Yafiq Yusman’s photographs are fun and quirky. For instance, he created a series of images captured through reflections formed in puddles and one with mirrors. The prolific Instagrammer also curates the popular feed Explore Singapore that chronicles everyday life and architecture. 

[#architecture] . TGIF post for @instagram's #whparchitecture

A photo posted by _Yafiq Yusman_ | ?? Singapore (@_yafiqyusman_) on

[#tinypeopleinbigplaces] . Old is gold. #throwback

A photo posted by _Yafiq Yusman_ | ?? Singapore (@_yafiqyusman_) on

[#minimalpeople] It's always good to have a brother who cares. TGIF everyone!

A photo posted by _Yafiq Yusman_ | ?? Singapore (@_yafiqyusman_) on



Yu Wie’s photographs portraits and everyday life along with architecture. His images of buildings explore patterns, form and colour. He often places humans in the frame that lends his images a sense of scale.

Anybody in the mood for some kueh-lapis?

A photo posted by Yu Wei (@yuuuuuwei) on

How I feel about Monday ??? #instasgsunday10pm #instasgsundayx #madaboutsingapore2016

A photo posted by Yu Wei (@yuuuuuwei) on


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