Note To Self


Jia Qi








Tell us what you study and why you decided to pursue this particular field.
I’m in my final year as a literature major at Yale-NUS.

I’ve always loved reading since young, and a friend who was fond of writing inspired me to go down the English route in school, snowballing from secondary school to junior college, and eventually college; there really isn’t anything else I’d rather do.

What are your favourite types of literature?
I really like poetry, and I’m an especially big fan of works from the Modernist period in the early 20th century—Virginia Woolf is one of my favourite writers.

Outside of school, what do you like to do?
I play the piano and saxophone, so I enjoy making music on the side, sometimes with a group of friends.

Some years ago, I dabbled in sound art as well, but they were just a couple of passion projects and nothing much.

Additionally, I picked up film photography last year, so I’ve been playing around with my film camera. Since I’ve started, I’ve become more focused on framing my shots and capturing the right moments, since film is limited and developing costs are quite high.

Does being a writer make you more intentional in your interactions with others?
I try to be, although it’s not often at the front of my mind. There have been occasions where I’ve had to take a step back to think about what words to use and how to phrase them.

Which exhibit at SAM did you find particularly memorable?
Dance in the Destruction Dance, a performative space and multi-sensory installation by Joo Choon Lin that explores human perception.

Conceptually, the mix of installation elements and performance was very interesting—witnessing how individual works of art stand on their own, both with and without the performative aspect.

What are you most looking forward to this year?
Finishing my final thesis and capstone. Ideally, I hope to take a month’s break before starting a job.

Likewise, is there anything you’re hoping to overcome?
Definitely the fear of loneliness. Times alone are inevitable, but I have a strong primal fear of being by myself forever, so what I’ve been trying to do is to take the aspect of eternity away and gradually give myself more alone time.

Besides, as a writer, I’ve had to sit with my thoughts a lot, and as scary as some of them might be, they’ve given me more clarity and perspective in life for sure.

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