Ong Kim Seng

b. 1945


Ong Kim Seng | 王金成 (b. 1945, Singapore) is one of Singapore’s leading watercolourists. He is a self-taught realist painter whose subjects include landscapes and street scenes. Ong painted with the Sunday Group in the 1960s, influenced by the artist Lim Cheng Hoe. He became a full-time artist in 1985.

Ong has won much recognition for his watercolour work. These include six awards from the American Watercolor Society (between 1983 and 2001) and recognition as a Master of ASEAN watercolourists at the World Watermedia Exposition, Thailand (2014). He received the Singapore Cultural Medallion in 1990 and the Public Service Star in 2004. Ong is the honorary president of the Singapore Watercolour Society (since 2001), an art advisor to the National Arts Council (since 1998) and a life Fellow of the National University of Singapore’s Centre for the Arts. He was also conferred the Dolphin Fellowship from the American Watercolor Society in 2000.

Ong’s work has been exhibited worldwide. Solo exhibitions in Singapore include Recent Works of Ong Kim Seng at the Singapore History Museum (2000), Moments of Light at the Singapore Tyler Print Institute (2004), Home and Nation in the Art of Ong Kim Seng at the Singapore Art Museum (2008). Ong’s works are in collections including Singtel, Singapore Art Museum, Singapore Maritime Museum, the Agung Rai Museum of Art, Bali, the Neka Art Museum, Bali, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Singapore.