The late Singaporean artist Lim Mu Hue was renowned for his skilful and intricate woodcut prints. Trained in Western painting at the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts from 1952 to 1955, Lim was mentored by the founding principal of the Academy, Lim Hak Tai and pioneer artists like Cheong Soo Pieng, Chen Wen Hsi and Chen Chong Swee. He was pivotal in developing woodcuts in Singapore’s art history during the 1950s and 1960s. Yet in Lim’s lifetime, he created a repertoire that includes artworks in charcoal, coloured pencil, pastel, oil, watercolour and Chinese ink.
Academic realism, such as still life and figure drawing, was part of the curriculum for Western painting during the early years of NAFA. Lim drew a sculpture of a knight on a horse during his art training. By employing dark and light tones to render the drawing, the work demonstrates Lim’s sensitivity to light, a penchant for details and control of the charcoal pencil. With his exceptional drawing skills, Lim returned to the Academy to impart his knowledge and nurtured a generation of local artists from 1960 to 1969.