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Life in Singapore, 1920s – 1990s

This Open Call has ended.

Open Call Details

The National Museum expanded our public engagement efforts to crowdsource objects from residents in Singapore for our Life in Singapore galleries, and to broaden our national collection. The Life in Singapore galleries present snapshots of everyday life in Singapore throughout the different eras in Singapore’s history. These galleries closed in 2023 for a refresh and will re-open in 2026 with new artefacts and stories from their respective eras.

The Open Call was centered around themes including:

  • Women’s lives in the 1920s to 1930s
  • Daily life during the Japanese occupation from 1942 to 1945
  • Children’s experiences in the 1950s to1960s
  • Singaporeans’ consumption of leisure, entertainment and graphic design from the late 1960s to early 1990s

The National Museum encouraged Singaporeans to contribute to this project by donating their historical items to the national collection and reflecting on life in Singapore in the past. Some of these items may even be featured in the refreshed Life in Singapore galleries in 2026.

Examples of objects included items used by women at work, school, or home in the 1920s to 1930s, documents issued or photographs taken during the Japanese Occupation, home-made toys or youths’ clothing from the 1950s to 1960s, or programmes and posters from television or theatre shows in the late 1960s to early 1990s. Other items relating to the themes were also welcome!

All submissions received will be assessed based on their relevance to the theme and how representative or significant they are, in terms of revealing a fuller, more in-depth or particularly meaningful or interesting picture of how people in Singapore lived their daily lives in the 1920s to 1990s.

This public call ran from 11 January until 15 May 2024.