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When Cooking was a Crime: Masak in the Singapore Prisons, 1970s—80s

Award: Graphite Pencil

Graphite Pencil / Book Design / Specialist Subject Books / 2021

Award: Shortlist

Shortlist / Magazine & Newspaper Design / Independent Magazines

Award: Shortlist

Shortlist / Graphic Design / Catalogues & Brochures

Researched over the course of 9 years, When Cooking was a Crime explores the illicit act of Masak –the culture of illegal cooking in one’s cell or dormitory – within the Singapore prison system of the 1970s and 80s. Shedding light upon the unique recipes, tools, and methods devised by the inmates to prepare suppers in the confines of their cells, the publication also investigates new meanings of food within the deprived environments of the Singapore prisons and Drug Rehabilitation Centres (DRCs) of the time.

  • When Cooking was a Crime: Masak in the Singapore Prisons, 1970s—80s
  • When Cooking was a Crime: Masak in the Singapore Prisons, 1970s—80s
  • When Cooking was a Crime: Masak in the Singapore Prisons, 1970s—80s
  • When Cooking was a Crime: Masak in the Singapore Prisons, 1970s—80s
  • When Cooking was a Crime: Masak in the Singapore Prisons, 1970s—80s

What did the judges have to say?

"The flouro orange ink, untrimmed pages, plastic cover together with really effective food photography made for a very creative book done on a tight budget."

Sam Arthur, Publisher, Nobrow/Flying Eye Books

"Original, poignant piece. Considered detail to reflect prison conditions."

Yehrin Tong, Illustrator, Yehrin Tong

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