The Estuary

Born in Amoy, China in 1912, Lim Cheng Hoe came to Singapore when he was 7. Primarily a self-taught artist, Lim studied art under Richard Walker, Singapore’s first Art Inspector of Schools, at the Raffles Institution in the early 1930s. Lim was a prominent and significant first generation artist due to his treatment of the local landscape in the watercolour medium and is associated with the Nanyang Style. He was also a founding member of the Singapore Watercolour Society. Lim passed away in 1979 in Singapore.Lim found the watercolour medium suited to quick, on-site studies of local sights and colours. In ‘The Estuary’, Lim uses the watery effects of the medium to recreate nature with its shifts and nuances. Dark blue paint applied on grey, whilst still wet, produces flowing amorphous forms that hint of dew-filled clouds. This painting is characteristic of Lim’s work after the late 1960s as he aims to capture the atmospheric quality of a location, and not its details.