Lot 080

b. Negeri Sembilan, 1967


Signed and dated ‘L Cheng Thak 2001’ (lower left)
Oil on canvas
121cm x 91cm

Private Collection, Penang.

ESTIMATE  RM 8,000 - 12,000

Man in the Sun depicts a barber sweeping hair off the ground with a broom at his makeshift shop in a back alley of a shop lot. A scene rarely seen in the city today with most barber shops located in an enclosed area makes this nostalgic piece special. Known for his skillful renderings of heritage buildings and old street scenes, this piece profoundly captures the past. The man’s reflection is visible from the mirror on the wall, placed in front of a barber chair. Calligraphic notices are seen on the ground and on the wall suggesting a Chinese populated town. A red letterbox numbered 168 attached onto the wall of a neighbouring lot is the only available clue to suggest the location of this anonymous location.

Lui Cheng Thak turned full-time in art after graduating from the Kuala Lumpur College of Art in 1989. Cheng Thak’s greatest muse has been old buildings and street scenes in Kuala Lumpur, Malacca and Penang, and is normally recognised for his iconic paintings of windows and birdcages that pay homage to Malaysia’s heritage, history and culture. It is through exquisite technique and continual development that this artist manages to keep the art of painting alive and relevant in modern times. To date, Cheng Thak has taken part in numerous exhibitions and has found much recognition for his works. He held his first solo called As I Was Passing in Kuala Lumpur in 1997 and his most recent exhibition titled Reborn was held in 2012. His paintings can be found in several prestigious collections public and private including the National Visual Arts Gallery in Kuala Lumpur.