Tuesday, March 27, 2007

The Making of "Recall" ( Part 2 )

Recall, Oil on canvas, 91.5 cm x 91.5 cm, 2001, Private collection

The work depicts a scene at the seaside, dispersed with people engaging in their own relaxing activities - building sandcastles, picking seashells, sunbathing, swimming...The young man on the foreground is engrossed in reading, holding in hand a picture. A child with a float stood by him, as if impatiently waiting for him to play with her.
The small picture in the man's hand recalls an event 2000 years ago - of people gathering at the lakeside to hear Jesus preach on boat. There was such eagerness to come together in pursuit of God's Word as shown; In contrast, people at present are seen to be more concerned with play and relaxation, investing much time in individual pursuits than coming to know the Creator who has created man, and nature - the very places they live, work and play in. It is the similar scene by the waters, but altogether very different human's concerns in the passage of time.

Additional contents:

At the seaside
- building sandcastle, symbolic of the tower of Babel, where people were caught in glorifying own human achievements.
- digging for earthly treasure in the sand, with the help of the treasure map.

In the sea
- sharks were seen chasing after swimmers, but people on the shore seemed indifferent to the misfortunate.
- background shows dark patches of water - sea pollution by tankers and endangering sea-life ( God's creation ).

Monday, March 05, 2007

The Making of "Recall" ( Part 1 )

In 1999, during Chinese New Year season, I was feeling very down because I was facing great challenges in my job. I also did not have a girl friend then. I knew my relatives would ask about my career prospects and whether I had a girl friend when they met me ( of course I knew they cared for me, but I was just too down to face anyone back then )...
At that time,I was living at Yishun, not too far away from sembawang park, so early morning I decided to leave house and go all the way to sembawang park, just wanted to aviod my relatives.
When I reached there, I could see many people at the beach - swimming, pinic, cycling, picking sea-shells...
When year 2001 approached, (Ha ! that was a year that I set my eyes on a lady called "Shirley", who is now my wife !), that was also the same year that I decided to do "Recall" painting.
Firstly, within all these years, I discovered I liked one of my sketches on my younger brother reading comics without shirt on [ Can see the sketch on "The Making Of Recall" (Part 2) ], and I often wondered how I could transfer that image into a painting...
At the same time, I also realized that I had been painting people indoors so far; so should try some outdoor painting... Almost instantly, the beach figures came across my mind!
Following that, I started thinking how I could include some God-filled message in the painting. There were quite a few historical events in the bible that happened by the beach or river-a wide selection to choose from. Finally, I decided to portray the event where Jesus preached from a boat, to the crowds who had gathered by the lake to listen to him. This event was then put in an interesting contrast to the present-day scenario of beach-goers pre-occupied in their activities...