A graduate of Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, Singaporean-based painter David Chan is a full-time artist who has had several gallery and museum exhibitions, including at the Art Seasons Singapore. His first solo exhibition, Genetic Wonderland in 2004, gained much critical and public acclaim. In that same year, he was also winner of the 23rd UOB Painting of the Year – Representational Medium Category Award.
Working with oil on linen, Chan paints in a realistic style with subjects such as animals, humans and animal/human hybrids against vivid backgrounds of intense blues, purples, yellows and pinks. In a rapidly globalising and biomorphic world, Chan’s idiosyncratic works depicts his perspectives and his commentary on various issues in contemporary society. At first glance, the works seem comical and bewildering but on closer inspection, it shows Chan’s judgement on reality and social issues, particularly the advances of science and human behaviour in our current times. Despite his cynicism, the works are hardly confrontational or aggressive in their messages but instead accompanied with satire, much like how he sees life itself. The works are a test of the viewer’s’ mind to see beyond the simplistic narrative and to recognise the subtext beneath it.
Chan has exhibited widely in Asia and the USA. His work was featured in the Wereldmuseum Rotterdam, Netherlands (2012), and was selected for the exhibition Future Pass at the Venice Biennale (2011). The artist also lectures at the National Institute of Education and the School of Art, Design and Media at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, and is an artist mentor with Singapore’s National Arts Council. Chan has exhibited with STPI for the BMW Young Asian Artists Series II: The Singapore Edition (2009).