SYED AHMAD JAMAL, DATUK
B. Johor, 1929 – 2011
Berenang – Swimming, 1965
Signed and dated “A 65” on lower right
Oil on canvas
122 x 76 cm
Provenance Private Collection, Kuala Lumpur
Illustrated on page 51 in the “777, Celebrating 7 Illustrious Years at KLAS” coffee table book published by KLAS in February 2019
Born in Bandar Maharani, Muar, Johor on Sept 19, 1929, Syed Ahmad Jamal had a carefree childhood on the land owned by his grandfather Syed Sahil, a prominent businessman in Johor Bahru. At a young age, he had begun to develop a keen sense of appreciation for the countryside’s natural landscapes and spent a lot of time observing his surroundings. Had he were to grow in the city of Kuala Lumpur, he doesn’t think he would have that kind of sensitivity to his surroundings, and ultimately create the art that he does now.
Do we choose our destiny, or does destiny choose us? For 82-year-old Datuk Syed Ahmad bin Jamal Sahil, the statement holds true either way – he has chosen art and he is the chosen one to tread the path of art. And when things occur in this manner, there is no limit to what one can do and achieve. As for Syed Ahmad Jamal, his life has unfolded into a colourful journey, a story told through his paintings, which are generally streaked with vibrant, energetic hues.