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Resources > Collections > Artwork Life in the Longhouse

Year of execution:  2011
Year of acquisition:  2012
Medium:   Mixed media on canvas
Dimension:  42 x 60  cm
Acquired in 2012

Selangor painter Yeo Eng Hin pursued his interest in art by training under renowned Malaysian artist Chia Yu Chian before enrolling at the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts (NAFA) in Singapore. In the 1980s, Yeo furthered his education in Paris at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts. A trip to the scenic hills of Cameron Highlands in Malaysia with his peers in 1976 led Yeo to develop his lifelong fondness for illustrating tranquil lands and peaks. In Paris, Yeo focused on sketching and oil painting, citing eminent artists like Bolognese painter Leonardo Cremonini and Chinese-French artist Zao Wou Ki as mentors. Yeo is also an art educator and an active member of the Malaysian art community. Some of Yeo’s other accolades and appointments include being Principal of Masean Art Academy in Kajang, Principal of the Art Specialist Centre in Klang, President of NAFA Malaysian Alumni Association and cultural education committee member of The Kuala Lumpur and Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall. 

In August 2011, Yeo embarked on a group painting trip to Sarawak with several NAFA alums. Life in the Longhouse is Yeo’s attempt to capture the rural lifestyle of longhouse inhabitants. In Yeo’s painting, two children are seen sitting on hay, mending a fish net. A juvenile livestock keeps them company. The painting exudes a poetic quality about simple domestic life while the interplay of light bouncing off the forms and nets invokes a rustic charm. The longhouse, built on stilts, is a long wooden structure stretching hundreds of metres. It is sectioned into columns of separate family rooms extending into a long, straight corridor where public life is centred. These houses can still be seen in Borneo in Sarawak and are usually occupied by the Dayaks. 


Yeo Eng Hin 余荣兴