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Lot 27

WONG HOY CHEONG

b. Penang, 1960

CHRONICLES OF CRIME: LAST SUPPER, 2006

Digital photography on Kodak professional paper, edition 2 of 8
86cm x 121cm

PROVENANCE
Private collection, Singapore; acquired through Borobudur Southeast Asian Contemporary Art Auction, Singapore,
28 October 2007, lot 88.

EXHIBITED
Wong Hoy Cheong: Bound of Glory, Valentine Willie Fine Art, Kuala Lumpur, 2006, illustrated on catalogue page 8.


ESTIMATE  RM 8,000 - 12,000
PRICE REALISED  RM 18,700

Wong Hoy Cheong’s art follows his socio-political activism fervour. They are all highly charged and centre around controversial subjects such as Sook Ching (1990) on the ethnic cleansing during the Japanese Occupation of Malaya; War Box, Lalang and Killing Tools (1994) on the political suppression of Ops Lalang; Of Migrants & Rubber Trees (2006) on immigrant history linked then to the new economy; and Relooking at the Pitt Rives Museum in Oxford, London, a parody using reverse colonialism ‘his-story.’ This work tells a story of the psycho-dramas of Malaysia’s most notorious criminals. He uses photography to re-enact the last meal of Botak Chin (Wong Swee Chin), reputed to be a modern-day Robin Hood, in his Pudu Jail cell before his execution of death by hanging. The re-enactment presents Botak Chin in a stoic stance, refusing to touch his last meal of KFC and wonton noodles.

Hoy Cheong examines a diverse range of methods and concepts in his multi-disciplinary practice. His works often involve political issues and has addressed Malaysia’s colonial legacy, contemporary society or overlooked elements of international cultural history. Hoy Cheong graduated with a double Masters in Fine Arts (Painting) from University of Massachussetts, Amhertst in 1986 and a Masters in Education, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts in1984. He has taught art locally and in England. He was artist-in-residence in Gasworks, London (2002); the Canberra Institute of the Art, Australia (1992); and Visiting Fellow in the Goldsmith College in 1999 and Visiting Tutor in the Central St. Martin’s of London in 1988. He obtained his Bachelor of Arts at the Brandeis University, USA in 1982. His first solo (open studio in Boston, USA) and Retrospective (Eslie Gallery in Taipei, Taiwan) were both overseas. He took part in the prestigious Venice Biennale in 2004.