CHEN CHONG SWEE (1910-1986)
CHEN CHONG SWEE (1910-1986)
CHEN CHONG SWEE (1910-1986)
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CHEN CHONG SWEE (1910-1986)

Nanyang Landscape

CHEN CHONG SWEE (1910-1986)
Nanyang Landscape
inscribed and signed in Chinese by Liu Kang (upper left)
chinese ink and colour on paper
68 x 101 cm. (26 3⁄4 x 39 3⁄4 in.)
Painted circa 1970s
two seals by Liu Kang
Private Collection, Singapore (acquired directly from the artist’s family)
Christie’s Hong Kong, 29 November 2015, lot 354
Private collection, Singapore (acquired from the above sale by the present owner)

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Lot Essay

Chen Chong Swee's creative career was marked by his lifetime devotion to and affinity for the medium of ink on paper. He was one of the four pioneer painters alongside Cheong Soo Pieng, Chen Wen Hsi and Liu Kang that traveled to Bali in 1952. While Chen experimented with oil to great success, it was his continuous ambition to work within his traditional medium while introducing new methods, styles, and topics that established Chen as one of the leading proponents of a truly 'Nanyang' school of painting.

The current scene is a blend of Southeast Asian as well as Chinese components - the huge scene and geographic components call to mind the rustic scenes of China. The consideration of two figures in conventional Malay dress strolling by the lakeside be that as it may, establishes the artwork solidly in Southeast Asia. Maybe Chen looked to unite his conventional and his new home through the delivering of this optimal scene.

The inscription stumbling into the upper left of the canvas, done by Liu Kang, adds an extra aspect to the composition as a token of companionship between the two specialists. Liu Kang composes a devotion to Chen Chong Swee's dominance of Chinese ink in this fine art that presents the interesting and colourful excellence of the Nanyang locale. Liu Kang's deference for his companion was not lost, and this work is probably the best illustration of Chen's unmistakable renderings of Nanyang scenes.

The current work is one that uncovers the straightforwardness which Chen had the option to blend both Western and Eastern ideas of variety and space. The style of variety application in this work is plainly impacted by Western practices of watercolour painting, yet executed here with the guarantee of a Chinese painter's information on ink wash, pressure, and the differing power of variety. While the mountains and highlights in the closer view are approximately illustrated with dark ink, the subsiding precipices behind the scenes demonstrate that they are totally made with liquid strokes out of the brush - which is a sign of conventional Chinese artwork. The ideal lake that possesses the focal point of the creation is delivered utilizing the blank area of the paper, with the unpretentious use of variety and line to delineate its limits. This utilization of blank area to propose structure is likewise solidly arranged in the practice of Chinese ink.

While artists like Cheong Soo Pieng and Chen Wen Hsi are known for their bold style and form developments, Chen Chong Swee is remembered for his unwavering commitment to teaching and skill-refining.

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