Lot 64 | Auction XXXIV


LOT 64


B. Kedah, 1947

Companions, 2006

Signed and dated “Eng Tay 06” on lower left

Oil on canvas

133 x 177 cm

Provenance Private Collection, Kuala Lumpur

RM120,000 -RM250,000


“Emotions, relationships, colour, light, wind or sounds that I experienced last night, or many years before, are the raw materials with which I try to create ‘new’ moments – the images my etchings represent – rooted in memory.”

Eng Tay was born in 1947 in Kedah, West Malaysia. In 1968, he moved to New York City and studied at the Arts Student League, School of Visual Arts and Pratt Graphics Center. Here he studied graphic design, painting and printmaking. He worked in the graphic arts field until 1978, when he undertook several painting trips throughout South America and Indonesia.

These trips formed a basis for the types of scenes and moments that became his subject matter – images of people playing music, family moments and interactions, market scenes and daily rituals. He began to exhibit steadily and continued to gain international recognition as his work was shown in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Indonesia, his native Malaysia and his adopted home of New York, as well as extensively across the United States. 

Eng Tay still lives in New York City and travels extensively. He continues to paint, sculpt and make etchings at his TriBeCa studio.

Eng Tay works in several media – limited edition etchings, painting and sculpture. Most of his work has found its greatest expression when addressing the concept of family – the poetry of the family, of man and woman, of children, of friendship, of music and of the natural world.

Eng Tay brings a universal quality, combined with personal myth into his works, and has evolved a narrative style that is lyrical, nostalgic, mysterious and exotic. He has found a way to reveal the harmony of life through the images of his memory. Since his goal is to create simple poetry, his are not ornate or pretentious but a poetic language that is freely accessible and readily learned, leaving a lasting impression of people in action and poetry in motion.