Sundial Garden

Sundial Garden

The Dilapidated House

The Dilapidated House

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Sundial Garden

I know I have neglcted this blog for quite some time; I have been very busy with work commitments and all. I did this drawing because of the cross and the circle (look at the brick pathways), and I like its stillness. Took me about five months to complete the drawing. 29 by 20cm.

Monday, August 20, 2012


Been very busy. Currently working on a drawing that will take me six to nine months to complete amongst other side projects.

Come back again in September or December.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Away till June/July

I will be busy from now till June or July. See you then.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Conceptual pieces 2 and 3

Change moths to butterflies.

Change moths to flowers.

Variations: Use light blue shirts, white shirts, black shirts etc.

Side notes:
Meaning(s) aside, the work makes use of the point-line-plane elements of art, as well as the language of repetition.

The moths/butterflies/flowers are the dots.

The lines of the shirts (viewed from side) form the lines 9and perhaps planes) of the sculpture/installation.

The shape of the shirts form the planes of the installation.

In terms of composition, there is also a focus (the work as a singular central piece), the primary elements (the shirts) and the secondary elements (the moths/butterflies/flowers).

Conceptual piece 1

I have this haunting image in my mind (perhaps a meditative one even): imagine a clothes stand with many expensive shirts (e.g. Comme des Garcons shirts) asaulted by a few hundred moths. The moths are trying to eat up everything. Now how do I construct this installation?

First, the moths cannot be real moths,for clearly this visual spectacle is meant for viewing in a white cube space. How to get someone to make these moths? Secondly, how do I get these moths to stick onto the shirts? Finally, how much will this cost?

(The notes read: To decide on structure of clothes stand later)

Monday, April 2, 2012

Loose notes

I have lived with my parents for thirty years.
I have taught in my school for seven years.
I have loved and lost.
What else can I not do?
And even if I fail, what difference does it make?

The truth is, I cannot expect to produce five works and they are all 'hits'. Every step is part of the journey. Each sketch, drawing or painting is a part of the journey.

Sailing out into the open sea with no destination in mind.

I need to believe in myself that I will get better. Turner and the Chinese painters have shown me the way.

The open sea. The other world. A series of notes, sketches, drawings, paintings, and ideas by sin.

I mustn't rush. I must work very slowly.

I am a self-concious and self-absorbed young man.

That the artist is inspired, will be discovered, and will become rich and famous is a myth that does not happen and has no real value in it.

Thee is no need for me to prove that I can draw or paint. In fact, it would be better if people look at my work and think that I cannot draw or paint.

I find that I am closer to the old-school and narrow-minded people in the old academies rather than the rebel or revolutionary. I need to change.

Sunday, March 18, 2012


Where art is concerned, quantity is not the issue. What matters is quality.

I must set high standards for myself.

There is nothing wrong with my art. That is the problem -- there is nothing wrong. Therefore my art is good, but never interesting. Look at a Comme des Garcons fashion show (especially SS 2012). There are at least 500 wrong things in it, but it is never for a moment boring or dull.

I was looking at two books on drawing, and things done more than forty years ago are more interesting than what I am doing now.

I am losing interest in non-contemporary art. I have done realistic illustrations, expressive drawings, and abstract paintings. It is time to move on.

I am inspired by Shirley Kwan's 'The birth of ten thousand things'.

I am thinking of mini-projects that require research and thought.

If I take more than two hours to work on an A4-size drawing of a dead bird, and the result is not even satisfactory, then I should not expect things to be easy.

I am turning 32. I want to do the best art of my life.

I accept my calling as an artist. I am not ashamed to learn from those who came before me.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Chimera: A Museum Adventure (draft)

The First Work: The Headless Monks and the Light Boxes

I entered the gallery. It was very dark. I saw five headless monks in ghostly grey robes sitting and meditating, three at the far end of the room facing me and two near the entrance with their backs turned to me. Between them was a large empty space. A haunting hollow sound, followed by a woman's wail, like a siren's song, drowned me in despair and sorrow. Ten light boxes lined the walls; five on each side. A voice said to me, " Go, look at the light boxes on the walls."

The first light box showed a blue city with seven headless monks in white robes floating in the air. The birds standing still were upside down; they could not fly.

The second light box showed a monochrome Chinese painting. Human angels with bird wings and legs flew above the landscape.

The third light box showed a mountainous desert with six traditional string instruments. At the foot of the mountains were tombs. Peacocks glided across the desert.

The fourth light box showed an orange plain where deers and antelopes roamed freely. In the distance, boats sailed along a river running next to a city. The brightly-lit landscape was darkened by flocks of crows hovering above it.

The fifth light box showed a sepia picture of wreckage and ruin, litter and leaves, debris and waste, scattered along a polluted river with American ships sailing over.

The sixth light box showed a Japanese burial ground in a tropical rainforest. The claustrophobic clusters of ancestral tablets looked like architecture.

The seventh light box showed a panoramic aerial view of a city set against a morning sunrise. Green parrots and purple clouds sailed over the landscape.

The eighth light box showed a traditional silk painting depicting Paradise. In it were birds of every species and colour, as well as phoenixes in their glorious splendour. A few horses, a lion and tiger, dwelled in peace.

(... ...)

The Second Work: The Children of Horror

I came face to face with a triptych.

The first panel showed a very old classroom with wooden furniture and wooden floor. Students in white sat quietly in neat rows; they looked like tombstones in a graveyard. Their eyes were hollow and their faces were without colour. Surely they could not be alive; they were ghosts from a forgotten and distant past. The schoolmaster, a tall white figure, stood watch in a corner.

The central panel, as unsettling as the first, showed nine boy scouts standing quietly. Six of them stared at me with star amblems covering their eyes. The laces of their left and right shoes had been tied together. They could not move, for if they had tried, they would probably have fallen.

The last panel was the scariest of all. It was like a mirror reflection of the first, except where there should have been faces, there were black empty spaces, gaping voids of darkness.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Old Changi Hospital

A little bit more to go.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Monday, February 6, 2012


My Dear Bomb (Yohji Yamamoto)
Infinity Net (Yayoi Kusama)
A Writer's Diary (Virginia Woolf)

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Monday, January 30, 2012

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

From the pages of my notebook

I worked from a photograph; this is not done en plein air.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

New drawing

Light and Darkness (Soseki)
A World in Decay (Akutagawa)

The drawing is almost completed.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Update on progress

I have worked on my latest drawing for about eleven or twelve days. There is still quite some way to go.

Light and darkness (Soseki). A world in decay (Akutagawa).

Art aside, I read Ryu Murakami's Audition and Tanizaki's Some Prefer Nettles. I would like to watch The Makioka Sisters (Kon Ichikawa) and read Tanizaki's novel after that.