Tay Bak Chiang 鄭木彰 (b. 1973)

Tay Bak Chiang graduated from the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts in Singapore in 1995 and studied at the China Academy of Art in Hangzhou, China, in 1997. He was awarded the First Prize in the Chinese Painting category in the 19th and 22nd United Overseas Bank Painting of the Year Competitions (2000 and 2003 respectively). In 2002 he received the Young Artist Award from the National Arts Council of Singapore.

Tay has always been inspired by nature. To him, nature is perfection, balance and harmony. He also believes his work should bear the imprint of his environment and reflect the spirit of contemporary times, even if it is rooted in Chinese ink painting. Hence, he often interprets anew nature themes familiar in Southeast Asia, such as heliconias, banana and palm trees, stones and lotus ponds.

Earlier in his practice, he experimented with deconstructing and reconfiguring nature motifs. More recently, he has attempted to move away from representational forms, abandoning motifs that may bear his feelings and points of view. He interprets lotus flowers as minimalist forms; stalks as thick, unembellished strokes; and stones as aloof, silent silhouettes, creating vistas that invite viewers to imagine and discover nature for themselves, just as nature intends for us to do.

In his recent works, he continues to push the boundaries and contemporize the genre of Chinese painting through the use of acrylic and pigments on canvas. It encapsulates the artist’s enquiry into classical Chinese ink art, introducing new perspectives in the portrayal of nature in order to evoke a sense of poetry and inner emotions. For the Stone Series, Tay states “I was first inspired on a walk in the Bukit Timah nature reserve some years ago. I chanced upon some rustic, unrefined granite rocks that stood with an imposing, dignified spirit amid the greenery. I thought they were like hermits, reclusive from the material world. They seemed to emit a cool quietness, an air of indifference”. Similarly, for his guqin series, though Tay does not play the 7-stringed instrument, he appreciates the traditional Chinese instrument, guqin as an iconic symbol of Chinese high culture and one of the most expressive forms that capture the essence of Chinese music.

Selected Solo Exhibitions

Selected Group Exhibitions 

  • 2018 | 《唤风》Beckoning of the Breeze, Visual Arts Centre, Singapore
  • 2018 | 《岩石裂缝》In the Cleft of the Rock , Pontone Gallery, Taichung, Taiwan
  • 2018 |《磊》 Moving Mountains, Artsembly, The Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay, Singapore
  • 2017 | Singapore – Japan Ink Painting Exchange Exhibition, Visual Arts Centre, Singapore
  • 2017 | Impressions, Oriental Art & Cultural Center, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
  • 2015 | 45th Anniversary Exhibition of Siaw-Tao Chinese Seal-Carving Calligraphy and Painting Society, Singapore
  • 2015 | Portable Art Week, iPreciation Gallery, Singapore
  • 2013 | Made in Singapore – Three Quarters of a Century, Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, Singapore
  • 2013 | 《床事》A Thing or Two about the Bed, FOST Gallery, Singapore
  • 2013 | Cascadence – Singapore Redux, iPreciation Gallery, Singapore
  • 2013 | Crisis of Monumentality, Chan Hampe Galleries, Singapore
  • 2012 | Cityscapes Unbound, OCBC Centre, Singapore
  • 2012 |《墨》Mò, Jendela Visual Arts Space, Esplanade, Singapore
  • 2010 | Now and Next – Modern Arts of Korea, Japan, Singapore,  National Museum of Gwang-Ju, Korea
  • 2010 | Space + Imagination, Korea Singapore Contemporary Art Exchange Exhibition, Jeollanamdo Okgwa Art Museum, Korea
  • 2010 | Celebrating Asian Art, Artfolio Gallery, Singapore
  • 2010 | Live Our Dreams Community Paintings, The Arts House, Singapore
  • 2009 | Nanyang in Paris, Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts Gallery, Singapore
  • 2009 | Nanyang – 70 Years After, Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts Gallery, Singapore
  • 2005 | Singapore Art Show, Singapore Management University, Singapore
  • 2004 | Internationale Cite des Arts, Paris, France
  • 2004 | Siaw-Tao Chinese Seal-Carving Calligraphy and Painting Society Exhibition, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia


  • 2003 | First Prize (Traditional Chinese Medium Category), 22nd UOB Painting of the Year Competition, Singapore
  • 2002 | Young Artist Award for Visual Arts, National Arts Council, Singapore
  • 2002 | Distinction Award, Chinese Painting Category, Dr Tan Sze Chor Art Award, Singapore
  • 2000 | First Prize, Traditional Chinese Medium 19th UOB Painting of the Year Competition, Singapore
  • 1999 | First Prize, Singapore Turf Club Art Competition
  • 1999 | Distinction Award, Chinese Painting Category, Dr Tan Sze Chor Art Award, Singapore
  • 1995 | 16th Shell Discovery Art Award, Singapore

Selected Public Collections

  • The Istana, official residence and office of the President of Singapore
  • Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Singapore
  • Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, Singapore
  • National Arts Council, Singapore
  • National Gallery Singapore

For full list of exhibitions, awards and collections, please contact the gallery at enquiry@ipreciation.com

Images of artworks




Press Releases


  • Painter’s Block, ZBBZ, Singapore, June 2015
  • Tay Bak Chiang, zbNOW, 22 October 2015
  • Stones, paper to canvas, Straits Times Singapore, 7 October 2015
  • Capturing the soft spirit of rocks and stones, Business Times Singapore, 3 October 2014
  • Tay Bak Chiang, Lianhe Zaobao Singapore, 1 October 2014

For more info on press and media coverage, please contact the gallery at enquiry@ipreciation.com 

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50 Cuscaden Road
HPL House #01-01
Singapore 249724

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Sat: 11am – 6pm
Sundays and Public Holidays
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Tel 65 6339 0678
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