Teo Kwang's art is a successful blend of Eastern and Western influences. However, unlike other Asian artists whose penchant entails the combination of Asian and Western art through medium, technique or subject, Teo Kwang's approach is somewhat more unusual and at times, even whimsical, but certainly very individualistic and special to him. He draws his inspiration from Chinese calligraphy and administers his own innovative processes to this very classical discipline. Picking out a Chinese character, he distorts the strokes and form of that character until it is unrecognisable, and takes the resultant object to create the pictorial effect.
In thus executing a painting, Teo Kwang, however, does not fix an importance to the meaning of the character, but rather concentrates on the visual effect produced. Therefore, it is not necessary to understand the Chinese language in order to appreciate his works. The bold and simple colours culled from Western oil painting and the abstract forms extracted from Chinese calligraphy allow the viewer to approach the painting with his own interpretation, thus creating an intimate link between the artist and his audience.
In 1999, Tan Teo Kwang's work will be exhibited in New York.