Tew Nai Tong
B. Selangor, 1936-2013
Signed and dated “Nai Tong 26-5-60” on lower right
Pastel on paper
36 x 26 cm
Signed “Nai Tong” on lower right
Pencil on paper
23 x 36.5 cm
Provenance Private Collection, Kuala Lumpur
RM 750 – RM 1,000
Tew Nai Tong studied art at the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts in Singapore (NAFA) and graduated in 1958 before furthering his studies at the Ecole Nationale Superieure des Beaux Arts in Paris. Among the awards he received were the Second Prize in the Chartered Bank Mural Design Competition, the Shell Watercolour Award, Best Award from Esso, the Dunlop Watercolour Award and the Grand Prize Asia Art Award (Malaysia) in Seoul. He was also the co-founder of the Malaysian Watercolour Society and the Contemporary Malaysian Watercolourist Association.
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.