The short films of Rajendra Gour (1967 - 1979)
16mm film converted to digital film, 41 min
Mon, Wed, Fri, Sat: 3pm - 7pm
Sun: 3pm - 5pm

Rajendra Gour signed up as a volunteer with the Asian Film Archive (AFA) in 2006. This was when the Archive made an important discovery – that Gour was a filmmaker and was possibly Singapore’s earliest independent short filmmaker. The AFA now preserves Gour’s surviving 16mm film prints and has embarked on making the works of this pioneer short filmmaker known and accessible. Labour of Love – The Housewife was published in AFA’s short film anthology DVD, Singapore Shorts Vol.2 in 2008. In 2018, the AFA restored Gour’s 16mm film, Sunshine Singapore.

Eyes (1967)
This is an experimental film that explores the pain and suffering in the world caused by a lack of understanding amongst mankind. All of this is viewed through the “eyes” of the people of the world.

Labour of Love – The Housewife (1978)
This short film examines the role of the Asian woman within the realm of the home and the family. It features the endless amount of work that a housewife must accomplish daily to run a household and to care for her family. The film is an early feminist take on the perception regarding the economic value of the stay-at-home mother and wife, whose contribution to society is often underrated.

My Child My Child (1979)
The film begins with a woman reflecting about her role as a person and as a mother. Her love and the sacrifices she have made for her children are evident and she has many happy memories of her time spent with them.

Sunshine Singapore (1972)
Sunshine Singapore pairs lurid, dream-like visuals of 1970s Singapore with music which leads the viewer through a variety of moods – oscillating between the languid and exotic, to the unfailingly upbeat – embodying the contradictions facing a nation on the cusp of modernity. In a departure from the detached quality of black-and-white archival footage, Gour offers a hopeful imagination of Singapore then and showcases his playful infatuation with its urban environment. A 4K restoration of Sunshine Singapore was made possible using the surviving 16mm film print preserved by the Asian Film Archive and restored by Cineric Inc. in 2018. 

Artist Biography

Born in 1940 in the small town of Dhariwal in Punjab, India, Rajendra Gour is possibly Singapore’s earliest independent short filmmaker. Click to read more After his graduation from the Film Institute of India, he came to Singapore in 1964 to work as a senior film editor at Radio and Television Singapore (RTS). Upon saving up enough money for equipment and film stock, he purchased a 16 mm film camera and learnt how to use it. His first film, Mr. Tender Heart was completed in 1965 and was screened at the Commonwealth Film Festival, London. He made three more short films – Eyes (1967), Sunshine Singapore (1972), and A Labour of Love – The Housewife (1977). Gour also wrote an original story and shooting script for Cathay-Keris Films and the theatrical feature Aku Mahu Hidup was made in 1970. Read Less