Scenery (The Incoming Summits)

Tan Swie Hian

Title

Scenery (The Incoming Summits)

Artist

Tan Swie Hian

Year

1986

Media

Acrylic on Paper

Theme

Abstract

Tan Swie Hian’s work is at once enigmatic as it is literal in nature. Drawing on poetry, philosophy and Chinese art as his starting points, he often draws and paints in a symbolic manner. He uses both public and private symbols in his paintings of landscapes and figures. These are often articulated in a naïve style of brushwork, with few strokes and simple imagery. The colours Tan uses are often applied as quick washes resembling Chinese painting, but using bright acrylic colour. 

In this painting, the two summits are painted in almost identical colours. A tree is perched atop each mountain. These floating forms appear to be moving towards the same point on a celestial collision path. Tan’s painting style is derived both from Western abstraction as well as Chinese landscape art, two great resources for creativity.