Fié Neo is an interdisciplinary artist from Singapore, who makes socially engaged works through participatory practice, wearable art and film. She creates spaces and encounters for human connection. Her art practice is a life inquiry attempting to understand the human condition and to facilitate social transformation. She creates situations for co-creation and collective reflection through participatory art and podcast. In 2017, she set up INSEP (International Network for Socially Engaged Practitioners) which brings together people around the world in the field of socially engaged practices to share projects and initiatives. She hosts a podcast called Onions Talk that features socially engaged practitioners on their change making journey.
Please introduce yourself shortly.
Fié Neo is an interdisciplinary artist who makes socially engaged works by participatory practice, wearable art and film, creating gaps and meetings for human connection. My art practice is a life inquiry attempting to grasp the human condition and to facilitate social transformation. Through participatory art and podcast, situations for co-creation and collective reflection is form. I also have a background in costume and set design for theatre and film.
What is the basic idea of your project?
In 2017, I set up INSEP (International Network for Socially Engaged Practitioners), which brings together people worldwide in socially engaged practices to share projects and initiatives. This journey opened many connections with fellow practitioners.
What are you dealing with, and which group of people are you targeting?
INSEP is developing to become a social enterprise that can support more artists while sustaining the supporting work. Currently, INSEP has a podcast (Onions Talk) and YouTube channel that features socially engaged practitioners in the network on their change-making journey. Newsletters are sent out quarterly, available for subscription through INSEP’s website. INSEP recently launched our first program pilot, Sustenarts, which matches sustainable start-ups and artists to scale impact by creating meaningful and personal narratives of sustainable solutions.
What is your setup phase?
We raise awareness and touch hearts through community engagement and empathy-driven art projects. The next phase would be bringing more sustainable solutions companies onboard the program to commission more projects. We will have case studies and sharing come March 2022 for interested companies, funders and artists.
We will eventually launch masterclasses on our website to support socially engaged artists thinking through their practice to design their methodologies and frameworks for change better.
One of the noticeable critical struggles in the sector seemed to be the financial sustainability of socially engaged projects. The work with communities is time-intensive - it requires project management, facilitation, social media communication skills and more - yet is often unpaid. My journey researching financially sustainable ways to continue such practice led me to social entrepreneurship.
How can SIEP contribute to your journey?
SEIP would be helpful with understanding pricing and increasing visibility - we are currently working to increase our podcast listeners and engagement of our content.
Would you mind sharing where people fascinated about your project could find more information about you
More can be read about this project on;
Instagram: @feeyeh_neo @sociallyengagedpractitioners
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/onionstalk
The interview was conducted by Tongwa Emilia Emeanji