APAD’s 50th Anniversary group show –” Moving On” at The Substation


Attended the exhibition opening night of the group show- “ Moving On” at The Substation, Armenian Street, last Thursday 3rd October. I was one of the participating artists. Our Guest-of-Honour Mr Masagos asked how me, a Chinese, get to join this only Malay Artists Association in Singapore. I said it’s because my husband Kamal Dollah is actively involved in the association, and me being an Islam convert, has been actively producing art works. Perhaps Mr Rahman, the president then and now, saw my effort and make an exception and accept me as one of their artists. Thank you Mr Rahman Rais.

This show commemorate the association move-out from their old premise at the Telo Ayer Performing Arts Centre at Cecil Street to the present new set-up at the new Arts Centre– The Aliwal Arts Centre at Aliwal Street near the Arab Street area. “Moving On” is also to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of APAD ( Angkatan Pelukis Aneka Daya or better known as Association of Artists of Various Resources). The show features around 60 works by 37 artists of the 66 member artists in the association. The works are small works of less than 2 feet in measurement each. Nice “bite size” for the small homes here in SG.

i showed two of my paintings from the Hua Dan series Titled: Paper Aeroplane and The Ride respectively. Here’s to mention especially that the Paper Aeroplane was produced after I had lost my fourth son at 24 weeks gestation. It anti men emotional and difficult period. I numbed myself through paintings, still doing it consistently… Paper Aeroplane featured Hua Dan riding on the red paper Aeroplane through stormy skies. She had her eyes shut while clinging on to the supposedly flimsy paper plane. She is struggling to move on but she choose to close her eyes because she don’t want to be distracted by the scene infront that she will forget her loss and pain… It’s a battle in the heart and mind…



忆缘 Yuan

忆缘 Yuan

I have decided to sign and finish doing this piece of work today. It has been a very dramatic piece. I started doing it when I was 5 months pregnant with Yuan. Shortly after that, when I was approaching 6 months in pregnancy, Yuan passed away in my womb. During my confinement after delivering and buried him, I continued and did most of the painting at that time..Then as I was about to finish the work, during confinement, a terrible and unforeseen accident happened to it. The painting fell from the easel and got a tear in the middle! I was devastated!! At that point, I felt so down and sad…unmotivated too. However, I pulled myself together and tell myself that this is just another test from God. So I patched the tear and do the necessary touches to the painting to salvage it. Finally it was done! This is a piece of heirloom for my sons. To commemorate the loss of their younger brother and also to remind them to treasure family love. 一幅波折重重的作品,这幅名为“忆缘”的画将是我留给儿子们的珍藏。

Colour Maestro

It was in mid February when I received a phone call from this guy called Shi Xiong. He said his company — GJ Production House is making a programme and they stumble upon my website and blog. They find that the flower paintings and Hua Dan series paintings were what they are looking for in one of the 6 episodes programme. So, they arrange to meet me.

To my pleasant surprise, it turned out that their director is Jack Choo (Zhu Hou Ren). I know he is a veteran actor but I didn’t know he direct too. After understanding my series (Hua Dan and Flowerism) of works and my interests in Cantonese opera and other things like collecting Blythe dolls and trinkets. They started filming in beginning of March. I was 3 months plus pregnant then. My tummy began to show and I was afraid the effect will not be good especially to put on the opera makeup and costume. However, everything turned out fine. The crew were efficient and professional. We went to a few location like SAFRA (for my caricature shoot), Singapore Art Museum where my work — “Tea with Mr. M” was on exhibit, Guangdong Huey Guan (where I learned opera), my house, my friend — Chengying’s house and  Art Seasons (the art gallery).

It was a fun and educational experience working with Jack and his team. Although I was suffering from rather bad morning sickness, I seemed to forget it the moment I was involved in the shoot. Yesterday was the telecast of the programme on Channel U. I received many compliments from friends and relatives. I even had a few email messages of people whom I don’t know but saw the programme and like my works. It was afterall, a very fruitful (and unexpected) experience. I will have to work hard to produce more good works so as not to disappoint all who loved me.