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Tropical Lab is the brainchild of Milenko Prvacki, Senior Fellow at LASALLE. It is an intensive and highly engaging art camp that brings together estudents from various art colleges and institutions around the world. The camp includes a series of workshops, talks and seminars guided by established international and Singaporean artists, culminating in an exhibition hosted by the Institute of Contemporary Arts Singapore at LASALLE.
The aims and objectives of Tropical Lab are to:
• Expand the views of the participants, exchange experiences and to stimulate creative thinking through a collaborative approach. 
• Create a positive environment that will stimulate and cultivate minds, imaginations, emotional (intuitive) consciousness, and cultural sensibilities of the emerging generation of young artists and students.
• Establish LASALLE as an institution that offers an environment for regional and international students to carry out research and advance their art practice in a short period. This will strengthen the value and potential of having a programme that is culturally relevant to a range of local, regional, and international students.

Visit the Tropical Lab archive  

Tropical Lab 17: Playground

Weather, as we know it, is a geo-scientific term that refers to atmospheric elements to which planetary inhabitants residing on Earth are subjected. Weather is an integral and integrative system that places humans and animals within the ecology of their habitat. Daily, we glance at the skies as we go about our ritualised chores or plan our activities around the everyday temperateness of the weather. The changing weather defines our everyday sense of being, and over long periods of predictability, it aggregates into the climate of our existence. Moreover, as a geo-scientific condition, the weather has a significant existential impact on the environment as the Anthropocene besets the human condition heightened by environmental shifts and crises (Sillitoe, 2021).

Climatic conditions and weathering themes pervade everyday life. From art and poetry to linguistic metaphors to cloud computing, fecund thematic variations remain essential for describing the human condition. In art, the weather remains a source of idyllic and lurid engagement: The outdoors is observed, colours and light are gazed at, while wind, rain and fire are stilled. The weather remains a source of observational training in reaching a realism that parallels an emotional epiphany, romance, melancholy or fear. As artists become deft conquerors of the morphing weather, art history etches a tamed environment subdued by ocular desires.

In contemporary culture, weather becomes a timely indicator of decisions and social practices. In politics, be it ‘fair-weather friends’ or the ‘tide in the affairs of men’ or war ‘hails’, the invocations and incantations remain potent and poignant. While concerns around climate change are at the forefront of contemporary discourse, scholars acknowledge how “profoundly this omnipotent force shapes culture” (Strauss and Orlove, 2020). For example, time is situated closer to the rapidity of weather forecasts than the long durational planetary orbit. In more recent times, climate anthropologists have advanced significant theories around the social and embodied dimension of the weathered human body, where “climate change has to be related to global inequality” (Erikson, 2021).