Ang Ah Tee (1943 - )
A painter of place, Ang Ah Tee’s body of work is poignantly reminiscent of the landscapes of towns and cities in Asia and Europe, as well as people and street scenes of Singapore. Born in 1943 in Singapore, Ang’s passion for painting was kindled in Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts at the age of 17, where he studied Western painting under Cheong Soo Pieng and Georgette Chen. Although Ang began his career as a clerk, he continued to paint during his free time and gained recognition in 1974 when he won a distinction award at an art competition organised by the Port of Singapore Authority. In 1977, he decided to pursue artmaking full-time. Dabbling in both watercolour and oil mediums, Ang held several exhibitions in successions with the support of British gallery owner, Delia Butcher. The sales of his paintings allowed him to travel far and wide.
Fascinated by the work of Vincent van Gogh, Ang has always been inspired by the European Modernist vocabulary of Impressionism. In his work, however, there is more emphasis on method than meaning; his style of painting is essentially anchored by deft, spontaneous brushstrokes and palette knife technique in applying swabs of paint. The use of fast drying acrylic paints serves as an excellent tool for his travels, which required him to paint swiftly. In totality, his work has now acquired a lyricism that evolved from semi-abstraction towards expressing a stylistic repertory of landscapes uniquely his own. Over the years, Ang participated in numerous art exhibitions and received multiple awards including a special award at the National Day Art Exhibition in 1978 and the first prize of the Dr Tan Tsze Chor Art Award (Western Painting) in 2001. Patiently persevering in his practice, Ang was accorded the Cultural Medallion in 2009.