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Lot 10 | Auction XXI

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LOT 10

Tew Nai Tong
B. Selangor, 1936-2013

Untitled, 1991

Signed and dated “NAI TONG. 91” on lower left

Pencil and crayon on cardboard

21 x 25.5 cm

Untitled, Circa 1986-1990

Signed “NAI TONG” on lower left

Watercolour on paper

21 x 22 cm

Provenance Private Collection, Kuala Lumpur

RM 1,000 – RM 1,800


The artist has an exemplary way of perceiving the simple life, enriching the visualisation of simple things through his profound skills. The simplicity and subsequent sophistication that erupts for his works are a testament to Tew Nai Tong’s affection for his skill and subject matter.

This piece captures the freedom and beauty of the human body, and Tew Nai Tong’s skills bring so much life to such a modest sketch.

He attended Ecole Nationale Superieure Des Beaux-Arts de Paris for 2 years, where he obtained the skills to paint using oil colour, enabling him to establish a solid foundation for his future advancement.

The combination stems from his time in Singapore and Paris, with his art being described as representing the tail-end of the old Nanyang (the Southern Seas of China) style as well as embodying the spirit of the new Nanyang style, a combination of stylised Balinese-Sarawakian figure types, the School of Paris chic and Chinese painting traditions.

The amount of research that he always puts in for his art is exemplary. He visited Bali from 1996 to 2006, while also making a return to Paris from 1999 to 2002 in order to conduct research for his artworks as well as to look for inspiration, visits that have also played a part in molding his unique style.

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