Artist and Model

Born in Fujian Province in 1911, Liu Kang received his formal training in Xinhua Art Academy of Shanghai, where he was exposed to Chinese paintings. In 1928, he went to Paris where he was influenced by art movements such as Fauvism and Post-Impressionism. Not only was he one of Singapore’s pioneer artists, he was also a leading figure in the Society of Chinese Artists and the Singapore Art Society. In 1970, he was awarded the Public Service Star for his contribution in the field of art. Artist and Model was done in a very different manner as compared to Liu’s other paintings. In this work, Liu eliminated excessive details as well as shadows. Instead, he emphasised the clearly-defined areas with outlines and colour fields. Rendered in a style akin to batik painting, it is not surprising to learn that Liu was experimenting with the technique of batik painting as he was much inspired by his artist friend Chuah Thean Teng (based in Penang, Malaysia) during the 1950s.