CHIA YU CHIAN
B. Johor, 1936 – 1997
The Wooden Bridge, December 1969
Signed on lower left. Title and date inscribed on the verso
Oil on canvas
56.5 x 44.5 cm
Provenance Private Collection, Kuala Lumpur
RM 8,000 – RM 12,000
Born in Johor in 1936, Chia Yu Chian studied at the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts in Singapore and graduated in 1958. He was known for being the first artist from the Straits Settlement to receive a French Government scholarship at Ecole Nationale des Beaux Arts in Paris and was commissioned by the Malaysian High Commission in Paris to paint a mural called ‘Life in Malaysia’. In Paris, he was accepted for exhibitions 15 times, a few with honorary mentions by the Salon des Independent and Societe des Artistes Francaise. These achievements are deemed very impressive as his only art background then was an informal guidance under another renowned artist, Chen Wen Hsi.
Throughout his career, Chia had numerous solo exhibitions and his artworks are found in the collection of various private collectors around the world, be they individuals or institutions. More impressively, prominent dignitaries such as the 11th Yang di-Pertuan Agong Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah, the first Prime Minister, Tunku Abdul Rahman and politician Tun Dr Lim Chong Eu had attended his art exhibitions. Most of Chia’s artworks were oil paintings and once in a while, he would resort to pastel, ink and watercolour medium. In the 1950’s, he painted mainly village sceneries, landscapes and people going about their daily routine, seen in ‘The Wooden Bridge’.