A blanket of public housing blocks in pastel shades covers the island of Singapore, creating a seemingly repetitive landscape. Yet, there is plenty of personality within this dense, gridded framework if you look closely.
More than 80% of the population in Singapore lives in subsidised government-built homes. This amounts to over 1 million flats in dense, high-rise housing estates. These homes, which are predominantly owned by their residents, are developed and maintained by the nation’s public housing authority, the Housing and Development Board.
The original typologies built in the 60’s were mainly long rectangular slab blocks, with flats lined up along a common corridor. Variations in shapes and height were later introduced as the housing estates grew. Potted plants, laundry racks and shoes are a familiar sight along HDB corridors, giving a hint of the different characters behind each door. Simultaneously a shared space for circulation and the public façade of individual homes, these corridors are an intrinsic part of everyday life in Singapore.
Informal front gardens are created with arrangements of potted plants in the common corridor, providing a means of connecting with nature on a more personal scale whilst living in a dense urban environment. They break up the sameness of the facades and rows of walkways, softening the threshold between public and private.
These drawings are part of an ongoing exploration on how people make interstitial spaces their own; a celebration of everyday life that becomes intrinsically stitched into the urban fabric and identity of a place.