A Nourishing Canvas


Fruits and food and things that can be imbibed all offer ready profound messages for the artist to exploit.

Food sustains body and soul. In art, especially in the depiction of fruits, it is as resplendent as still-life with all the stylistic métiers, and is used as metaphor for human strife and foibles.

An early food canvas is by Singapore pioneer Georgette Chen (1906-1993) with her outstanding still-life such as Still-life with Durian, Rambutans & Mangosteens (1965) and Moon Festival Table (c. 1965-1968) on the mooncake delicacies. The ingredients were simpler back then, unlike now when objects like abalone and Musang King durian can be added. Batik art founder Datuk Chuah Thean Teng (1912-2008) had also done several works such as Boy With Fish, Fruit Season (c. 1970s), Durian Sellers (1990), Eating Durian and Eating Noodles (2001)

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