A Forest in the Window

2019 - ongoing, photography

From my window, I could see many things happening on the mango tree that grows to right outside my window. About 3 years ago, I started photographing what I observed occasionally. During the mango season, dozens of parakeets flock to the trees for a feast. The sight and sound of the parakeets among the trees, against the backdrop of HDB flats and passing vehicles, weave together to form a strange scene – one that is simply a small part of the urban forest that Singapore has carefully cultivated over the decades.

Trees have been an integral part of cities, be it functionally or symbolically. A densely populated garden city, greenery exists throughout Singapore, whether around highly developed commercial spaces or residential areas. Likely to be planted in the 1980s along other fruit trees in an effort to add variety to the landscape, mango trees line up along the street where I stay; including the one that I have been observing from my window.

Gazing out of the window, I feel as if I am looking into a natural world that has seemingly integrated into a part of this highly urbanised city-state. It makes me wonder if the urban forest is part of the city, or if the city is part of the urban forest.