TAY BAK KOI
B. Singapore, 1939 – 2005
Signed “Bak Koi 71” on lower right
Oil on canvas
49 x 61 cm
Private Collection, Canada
RM 22,000 – RM 50,000
A visual poet, Tay Bak Koi depicts an obstinacy of buffaloes huddled together on a field and a silhouette of a herder stands overseeing these animals, and overhead, the sun is painted in all its blazing glory. A warm palette becomes this painting, setting a tropical, bright ether and capturing the motion of the atmosphere. The artist also incorporates a dream-like feel in a form of sophistication and simplicity. This arresting work is probably one of Tay Bak Koi’s earlier masterpiece from the “Buffaloes” series to be offered in an auction.
Tay Bak Koi was an artist renowned for his portrayals of fishing villages, kampung scenes and urban landscapes. He specialised in oil and watercolour and his works have been exhibited extensively in Singapore and various other countries, including Malaysia, Hong Kong, Japan, Australia, Germany and the United States. Tay’s talent for drawing was discovered by his father’s friend, who subsequently enrolled him in the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts in 1957. His teacher, the late Cheong Soo Pieng, taught him to appreciate existing works of art in new ways and to challenge conventional art forms.