Born in Singapore in 1947, Poon Lian graduated from NAFA in 1969 and majored in Western Painting. He learnt Chinese ink painting under pioneer artist Chen Wen Hsi and is adept at Western and Chinese painting techniques. While running his own business, Poon Lian contributed to NAFA in various capacities as an alumnus and continued his art practice. He retired in 2003 and became a full-time artist to paint and travel. In 2020, he was named the Ngee Ann Artist of the Year for his achievements and contribution to the local artist community.
Poon Lian was trained in Western painting at the Academy and focused on Chinese ink and colour in his early artistic career. It was in the new millennium that Poon Lian delved into the Western tradition of oils. In Still Life with Flowers, his careful selection of objects reveals Poon Lian’s sensitivity to texture, contrast, and colours. He demonstrates this by juxtaposing the delicate tulips with the hardy proteas, the vibrant choice of colours for the flowers, the dainty clay vessel and the small grey object display on the table fabric against a dark backdrop.