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Lot 78 | Auction XX

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LOT 78

Khalil Ibrahim
B. Kelantan, 1934

Figures,1997

Signed and dated “Khalil Ibrahim 97” on lower right

Ink on paper

33 x 41 cm

Provenance Private Collection, Kuala Lumpur

RM 6,000 – RM 9,000


This pen on paper sketch combines two of Khalil Ibrahim’s favourite subject matter – the East Coast and the human figures.

“Once someone understands that drawing is a tool for understanding and transforming the visual world, he or she invariably recognizes how important it is. Everyone should learn the fundamental skills of abstracting the three-dimensional world on a two dimensional surface with crayons, graphite, charcoal or ink. I emphasize drawing in my own creative life. My passion for drawing has remained unabated. It continues to be the foundation of my work in the studio and I never without a writing instrument that I can use to sketch ideas.” – Khalil Ibrahim

Khalil Ibrahim’s sketches have been crucial to his art practice. Sketchbooks kept him grounded, a map to locate himself if ever he were to go far off. Sketching brought him back to the present. They also enabled him to keep track of moments that mattered. This was perhaps the most intimate way of reaching into Khalil’s mind, his thoughts and ideas from deep within. It first started during his training at St Martin’s, where he would sketch potential frameworks and ideas for his art, and continued on even when he returned to Kuala Lumpur where he and his friends would wander around Jalan Masjid India to sketch people.

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