Born in Guangdong Province, China, Chen Chong Swee (1910-1985) came to Singapore in 1931 shortly after graduating from Xinhua Academy of Art, Shanghai. He co-founded the Salon Art Society (now the Singapore Society of Chinese Artists) in 1935 and was a teacher with Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts for over 20 years. In 1952, Chen, together with fellow artists Chen Wen Hsi, Cheong Soo Pieng and Liu Kang, went on what would eventually turn out be a historically significant trip to Bali, Indonesia in search of new inspiration and subject matter. As one of the first artists instrumental in developing the Nanyang Style, Chen pioneered attempts to interpret local landscapes according to the Chinese concept of pictorial composition with Western watercolour techniques.Besides painting in watercolour and Chinese ink, Chen also painted in oil. His artistic style however remained realistic as he believed that the objective of a painting must be understood by its viewer. ‘Balinese Women’, painted in the year of the seminal trip to Bali, depicts two women with baskets of fruits. The rich cultural life and natural beauty of the tropical island continued to fascinate Chen long after his first trip there in 1952.