Artist - Portraitist - Sculptor
Coin Designer of the Mint of Paris France

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[Acclaimed in China] [Acclaimed in Singapore] [Acclaimed in France and USA]

Master Portraitist
"Singapore Artists Speak 2"
- by Katherine Ho 1995-

A professional and versatile portrait artist-cum restorer, Dr. Lai Kui Fang distinguished himself by winning several overseas scholarships while studying on a French government- sponsored scholarship at the world-renowned Ecole Nationale Superieure Des Beaus-Arts in the 1960s. Having obtained the prestigious Diploma Superieure D'Art-Plastique in 1969, he went on to master bronze casting, stone sculpture, fresco painting, mosaic and stained glass for the next three years. For his devotion to the French classical painting tradition, he became the first Asian to receive the coveted decoration of Knight of the French Order of Arts and Letters in 1968. He resided in France for 15 years to restore as well as create damaged works of art masters to their former glory. He has won numerous prizes and art awards and held several important appointments such as Lecturer in Fresco Protection of China National UNESCO Committee and an advisor for the Luo - Yellow River archaelogical study in Gongyi City, Henan, China.
"When I was five, my father wanted me to be an engineer or a doctor, never an artist. But art has always been my first love. My copies of Mona Lisa, for example, were inspired through years of study in France where I spent seven years specialising in classical oil painting and another three years in sculpture. I admire great portrait artist such as Goya, Delacroix Gainsborough and others In the tradition of French classical painters, I have chosen a lighter background to highlight the model's features.
As a portrait artist, I create a suitable setting to bring out the fine details of, for example, the opulence and grandeur of the fine and famous. I am also an admirer of Rembrandt's Romantic technique as well as Delacroix's historical style. Look at my nudes. They embrace the classical tradition of applying meticulous coats of paint to render the full naturalness in their pose and to highlight their facial tones. During my attachment to the world-famous Louvre and major European museums, I have restored more than 200 masterpieces including large private collection -- retouching, shaping and colouring them to life-like realism. Besides the classical style, I apply spontaneous brush strokes of the Romantic style to give my works an impressionist feel. When I'm not painting, I sculpt. I have done several bronze busts of famous local personalities. I am also a coin designer for the Paris mint.
Apart from the European tradition, I am also trained in Chinese art. My commissioned projects in China are varied. For example, I have been asked to consider the restoration of a breath-taking mural entitled 'Tile God of Mount Taishan On A Tour of Inspection and Homecoming'. My series of historical paintings which featured former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew at the swearing-in ceremony in 1959, and my recently-completed, wall-size works depicting the Japanese Occupation of Singapore, required much study and contemplation. I had to understand the events before portraying the underlying passion accurately. Yes, I like their massive scale. I value them. My latest commission from Singapore Government include Portrait of President Ong Teng Cheong etc. My experience working with diverse media such as bronze, pewter, cement fondu, marble, clay and fibre glass helps me to realise the potential and scope of what I am doing. Above all, my clients must feel a deep sense of satisfaction when they set eyes on my pieces."

Personal Data

Lai Kui Fang, Born 21st January 1936, Malaysia
Citizen of the Republic of Singapore
Entitled French Resident Privilege Since 1970

Art Education

1956 Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, Singapore
1963-1972 Diploma from L'Ecole Nationale Superieure Des Beaus Arts, Paris, France, in painting and sculpture. (Master's Degree eqv.)

One-man Exhibitions

1967 Galerie de la Ville De Paris, France
1971 Galerie de Sevres, Paris, France
1972 Triton Museum of Arts, California, USA
1972 Singapore Chinese Chamber of Commerce & Industry
1972 Victoria Memorial Hall, Singapore
1975 Victoria Memorial Hall, Singapore
1980 Alliance Francaise, Singapore
1981 National Museum Art Gallery, Singapore

Group Exhibitions

1964 & '67 Exposition Les Artistes Etrangers Boursiers du Gouvernement Francais, Orly, France
1964-'76 Salon Des Artistes Francais, Paris, France
1965-'75 Salon De La Nationale Des Beaus-Arts, France
1965 Exposition Prix Paysages de France, D'Esso Standard, France
1965-'75 Participated in many regional exhibitions in France, as well as French exhibitions abroad, in countries including Germany, Austria, Italy and the USA
1972-'86 National Day Art Exhibition, Singapore
1976-'89 Singapore Art Society Annual Art Exhibition, National Museum Art Gallery, Singapore
1987-'93 Singapore Art Fair
1987 National Museum Centenary Art Exhibition, Singapore
1988-'90 IBM Art Exhibition, Singapore
1989 Ministry of Communications and Information Art Exhibition
1991 Defence Art Competition and Exhibition, Marina Square, Singapore
1991 Exhibition of Well-known Artists from China and Abroad, Henan,
1994 Le Pont Des Arts, Nanyang Artists in Paris, National Museum Art Gallery, Singapore etc.

Selected Awards

1963-1968 Five-year French government scholarship to study in Paris
1965 Silver Medal, Salon Des Artistes Francais, Paris, France
1966 Gold Medal, Salon Des Artistes Francais, Paris, France
1967/'69 Grand Prizes from the French President
Grand Gold Medal from the City of Paris, France
Silver Medal, from the Prefecture de la Seine, France
1968 Italian government scholarship to study in Rome
1968 Four-year Lee Foundation study grant
1968/'75 Knight and Officer of the French Order of Arts & Letters
1991 Doctor of Arts (Hen.) from AEIAF, USA
1991 First Prize, Defence Art Competition
1993 Gold Medal, Golden Goose Prize Calligraphy & Painting Competition, China
Gold Medal, and conferred as one of the "World's Great Artist", by the world-renowned Artist-Review International Committee, China
Doctor of Fine Arts, from P. W. University, USA

National and Private Collections

Triton Museum of Arts, California, USA
City of Paris, France
City of Juvisy France
National Museum Art Gallery, Singapore
History Museum, Singapore
Henan City, China
And many private collections in Singapore and abroad including Malaysia Hong Kong, France, Italy, The Vatican, Switzerland, Germany, Spain, Belgium, Australia, Canada, Argentina, USA, Japan, Taiwan and China

The Singapore Painter
Better Known Abroad
"Singapore Tatler" 1983
- by Chris Yap -

The most striking feature of a Lai Jui Fang painting is his amazing attention to detail to achieve a high degree of realism.
An oil painter par excellence, some of Lai's works have earned the unsavoury remark of being "photographic" - a comment grossly unjustified and surely an affront to a dedicated artist who devoted years perfecting the classical style of oil painting.
Another irony is that this Singapore painter is better known abroad. Lai spent 14 years in Paris where he studied at the Ecole Nationale Superieur des Beaux-Arts, the premier French art academy.
In fact Lai first enrolled there with a scholarship from the French government and had the distinction of having it renewed a record four times. To date this professional artist has won an astonishing 44 medals for artistic achievements.
But Lai is proudest of two awards: he was the first Asian to be received as the Knight & Officer of the French Order of Arts and Letters. Later, he was also given the Grand Vermilion Medal of Paris.
Not surprisingly, he's listed in the French Who's Who and his works are in many permanent and private collections in the U.S. and Europe.
Lai paints mainly with oils, a "heavy" medium suited to his perfectionist temperament and allowing him to retouch, shape and colour to satisfy his desire for realism.
He's become so skillful at it he has won a reputation as a restoration artist among European museums. Not only does he excel in repairing damaged masterpieces, he is known for creating copies of works by the Old Masters.
However, Lai's chief claim to fame lies in his lifelike portraits. A French art critic called him "portraitist complet." Another review gave him the accolade of "grand maitre" in classical portraiture.
Since his return to Singapore seven years ago, Lai has captured many local VIPs and high society patrons with his skilled brush. The naturalness of his subjects has gained him new fans... and more commissions.
A scrutiny of these works reveals definite influences of the Romantic school as well as classical touches reminiscent of 16th-17th century painters.
This is a result of his acquaintance with the works of the Old Masters during painstaking restoration work in the Louvre and other museums.
Lai admitted, "I attribute these influences to my frequent visits to the Louvre and other European museums. Actually, I did restoration work on more than 2000 master-pieces of the Old Masters."
He admires and draws inspiration from their great works. Among them are Rembrandt ("his technique of painting people vibrantly") and Delacroix ("especially his composition and historical style").
Lai says he does both Romantic and classical portraits. A Romantic portrait usually means a sparse background and spontaneous brush strokes to give it an impressionistic flavor.
In comparison, a classical portrait adopts a full frontal perspective, requires at least three coat of paint and meticulous strokes of the brush. "I like both styles. So it depends on the subjects I'm painting. Mostly I adopt a mixture of both techniques. I choose the best, so to speak, to illuminate my subjects."
Actually one finds more classical elements in Lai's portraits. Evidence of this can be found in the imitative grandeur of his settings. Portraits by the classical masters often reflect the opulence of the rich patrons of the arts in the 16th and 17th centuries.
Similarly Lai tends to paint his wealthy subjects with their attendant trappings. Often his models pose with ornate furnishings. The golden furniture or ebony high armchair are dead giveaways. So are the flowing gowns worn by the ladies.
Other rich details include the regal pose, with a pet poodle or favourite stole draped around the shoulders. In short, Lai deliberately creates a "traditional setting" where he can really show off his best etching in the fine details.
In one interesting variation of the saffronrobed abbot, for instance, the artist dextrously paints the delicate creases of the subject's priestly attire. A splendid bronze Buddha in the background adds a classic touch of gold to the composition.
Though he paints men and women, Lai excels in his portraits of women, flattering them with naturalness and subtle facial tones. Again, this is a trait of classical portrait artists.
Lai explained. "True, about 90 per cent of my models are women. Probably this is because women have more time to pose. Men seem too preoccupied with business affairs. Besides, they like to capture on canvas their youth and beauty."
Perhaps Lai is simply following in the footsteps of many famous artists who painted women. Notably there is Goya who glorified the Spanish "Maja" or the English peer Gainsborough who depicted the English nobility and royal court.
Lai's portraits can best be described as those of the French classical style. He has chosen a lighter background to highlight the model's feature.
This departs from the classical backgrounds of Rembrandt or Van Dyck which favour a darker, quiet setting. Two French painters, Ingris and David, obviously influenced Lai in this.
He also sculpts, a legacy from a six-month stint in Rome where he researched ancient cultures. That scholarship fired his interest in sculpture and since then he has completed bronze busts of local personalities, including one work of Dr Yeo Ghim Send.
This versatile artist also paints animals and birds. His pigeon painting have been very well received. there are landscapes too, especially those of Chinatown scenes and the Singapore River.
Recently Lai experimented with the Chinese brush. Inevitably, his scenes of China done during a recent trip have a Westernesed approach. Once more the artist can escape his roots in natural realism.
As the French put, it "le style c'est l'homme" (the style is the man). Lai Kui fang Paints portraits very "au naturel."

Portrait Artist Cum Sculptor

Lai Kui-Fang (Shao Feng), a man of Dao Pu Origin in China, a citizen of Singapore and also a French resident entitled to special privileges.
In 1963, Lai Kui-Fang won a government scholarship to further his studies at the World renowned "Ecole Nationale Superieure des Beaux-Arts" in Paris. He specialised in figure drawing for 7 years and has achieved an excellent result. In view of the result, Lai Kui-Fang was recommended by Prof. Chapelain-MIDY for 5 consecutive scholarships. In 1969, he obtained the "Diplome Superieur des Arts-Plastiques" (equivalent to the Master's Degree of the National University of Singapore). In the same year, he proceeded to learn sculpture under the tutelage of Prof. Etienne Martin. Meanwhile, he also learnt bronze casting, stone sculpture, fresco painting, mosaic, stained-glass till 1972.
During his study in Europe, Lai Kui-Fang was furthermore awarded an Italian government scholarship, a bursary from "Visitator Apostolicus de sud I'Est Asiatique" and a four-year grant from the Lee Foundation, Singapore. He devoted himself to professional training and in the meantime, he was engaged in research on the paintings of celebrated old masters at the world's largest arts museum, the Louvre for 10 and 15 years respectively. His painting and sculpture is influenced by the Renaissance, Classical and the Netherlands and French Schools, the French Royaume style, Romanticism, Realism as well as 19th Century NeoRealism. His masterpieces possess the qualities of the paintings collected by traditional western European galleries. His paintings are bright and vivid and they give an impression of harmony with the beauty of nature. Thus his work has been appreciated by the nobility, dignitaries in the circles of politics, business and banking & art collectors.
As early in the sixties and seventies, Lai Kui-Fang's work is already well-known not only in Paris but highly acclaimed in the international scene. In 1966, he received the 1st Gold medallist from "Salon Des Artistes Francais" that was internationally announced by Reuter, A.F.P. and A.P. In 1968, the Republic of France conferred him the Knight of the French Order of Arts and Letters. In 1975, he was preferred to Officer of Arts, the highest honour bestowed by the government to distinguished masters of the arts. In 1969, he won the Grand Gold Medal of the City of Paris which was granted to him in recognition of his contributions to France. In 1967 and 1969, he was awarded two Grand Prizes from the President of the Republic of France. During 15 years in France, he has made an impressive record of winning 49 prizes, including gold & silver medals, decorations gazetted Arts Awards.
In Singapore he took first top prize and merit prize for the First Defence Art Competition in 1991, among 176 entries from 119 artists.
Lai's exposure to the masterpieces of the European Renaissance could be seen in his painting which had been largely inspired by Classical, Romanticism, Realism, Impressionistic, 19th Century Neo-Classical Realistic tradition , Italian Renaissance and the Netherlands School so much so that it landed him the job of been appointed the official copyist for reproducing the Master Pieces of the Louvre Museum.
A successful society portrait artist in oils, he has painted the portraits of many dignitaries, both local and foreign.
An oil artist par excellence, Lai paints in the European classical tradition. His portraits and landscapes bear the influences of the Old Masters and the great Romantics such as Goya Rembrandt and Delacroix. He skills in restoring masterpieces, which included more than 300 paintings, is sought after by museums and private collectors. He has also developed new techniques of restoring paintings damaged by heat.
Lai is also just as successful as a sculptor, working in diverse media such a bronze, pewter, cement fondu, marble, clay and fibre glass. Over the years Lai has captured the likeness of many foreign and local dignitaries and personalities in his sculpture and oil portraits. He is also a souvenir coin designer for the Mint of Paris, specializing in Oriental figures.
In 1991, Lai Kui-Fang obtained an Honorable Doctor's Degree in Arts from the Albert Einstein International Academic Foundation. In 1993, Pacific Western University, USA, bestowed a Doctor's Degree of Fine Arts on him.
The works of Lai Kui-Fang has been largely collected by national municipals and private collectors. There are 17 masterpieces in the Triton Museum of Arts in the USA, 2 in City of Paris, 1 in City of Juvisy, France, 3 historical paintings and 7 others in the National Museum of Singapore. His paintings can also be seen in New York, Kansas, Virginia, Missouri, San Francisco, Camel Santa Clera , San Jose, Giroy, Los Angeles, Paris, Ils de France, Corse, Nice, Sardinia, Rome, Milan, Greece, Geneva, Basel, Zurich, St. Gallan, Madrid, Western Berlin, Canada, Belgium, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Penang, Sabah, Brunei, The Philippines, Japan, China, and Singapore.
In 1972, honourably invited by the Triton Museum of Arts for a month ofSolo Exhibition. Following the Solo Exhibition in Singapore in 1972, 1976, 1980, 1981, 1990, 1991 until presemt.
Lai Kui-Fang is listed in the French directories: "Who's Who", "The Human Value of Golden Book" (Le Livre d'Or de Valeur Humaines '70), Contemporary National Dictionary '68. He is also listed in Singapore Artists Directory, Singapore Artists, Annual of Fine Arts, and Who's Who in Singapore and Malaysia "Singapore Artist Speak 2", "Singapore Artists Directory 1996". He is an editor'(Singapore-France) of Editorial Board for the World Famous Contemporay Artists' Dictionary and the world Famous Artists' Painting and Calligraphy Collection.
Lai has left his mark not only in Europe but in more recent years, in the People's Republic of China. In 1987, Lai was the first Singaporean to be invited to contribute poem cum calligraphy inscripted on the famous Henan Stone in Henan Yellow River.
His poems in the form of calligraphy have been inscribed on the famous stones in Taishan, Kaifeng.
Lai Kui-Fang has been assigned various appointments in China. He is a Lecturer in Fresco Protection of China National UNESCO Committee, Foreign Advisor of "Teenagers in China & abroad Magazine", Honorable Dean of the Institute of Poetry, Painting and Calligraphy of Tien Shui, Consultant of the Academic of the Zhang-Zhi Eastern Han Memorial Hall Dunhuang, and of the Hanyen Famous Stone Inscription Committee, Chairman of the World Renowned Artist-Review Committee and a member of the Academic of Taishan.
In September 1990, Lai was invited to attend the First Taishan International Academic Symposium organised by UNESCO and the China UNESCO National Committee . He was appointed as lecturer to give series of talks on the restoration and the preservation of Fresco painting.
In September 1991, Lai Kui-Fang was invited by the Government of Henan in China to attend an exhibition of well-known artists from China itself and abroad. Again in 1992 he was requested to be present at Three Gorges 2nd Arts Festival in Hubei. In 1993, he is assigned an Honorable Chairman for Asian Artists' Association and China Zhe-Ming Culture-Education Foundation.
In October 1993, he has been appointed Member of Permanent Council of HENAN OVERSEAS EXCHANGES ASSOCIATION.
In December 1993, he was awarded Gold Medal from the "GOLDEN GOOSE PRIZE CALLIGRAPHY & PAINTING" competition in China.
In June 1993, he was conferred as " World's Great Artists" Nominated by the World Renowned Artist-Review International Committee, CHINA. Also obtained Gold Prize for his contribution in the field of Arts...
In term of his activities in Singapore, he has been appointed by Prime Minister's Office as Member of Serangoon Gardens Citizens' Consultative Committee and Chairman for SubConstituency Area One for the Serangoon Gardens Thomson GRC. In December 1993, he was appointed as Adviser for the Choa Chu Kang Art Centre. In addition, he serves as Committee members for Chuang Chu-Lin Scholarship Foundation, Da Qiao School Advisory Committee, Pei Dao Secondary School Advisory Committee. Moreover, he has designed greeting cards for use by the Singapore Cabinet as well as another series of greeting cards for Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong.
The Singapore government has commissioned Lai Kui-Fang to depict the history of Singapore on 3 large paintings when the former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew first gained independence from the Birtish in 1959. His monumental bronze statues stand in Chung Cheng High School and Pei Chun School.
Present commission include a large oil painting portrait of President Ong Teng Cheong.
Another 2.5 metre high "Joy" green Bronze casting stand in the garden of Choa Chu Kang constituency...

Portrait of a master

Corinne Kerk meets Paris-trained Lai Kui Fang
who has painted many VIPs and politicians, including Senior Minister Lee Kuan Yew
(Business Times, Singapore August 26 1995)

LAI KUI FANG's Serangoon Gardens home is just the sort of place you would expect an artist to live in. From the rickety silver metal gate, the old car parked in the cement driveway to the clutter of paintings on the crowded walls of the terrace house, everything seems to have landed there by chance, the owner too engrossed in something else.
But it's easy to see what he's preoccupied with. In the porch, a huge oil painting of a lady reclined on a couch strikes the visitor, with its vibrant colours and composition. And in another room, the beginning of a portrait of President Ong Teng Cheong awaits Lai's attention.
"That one's commissioned by the History Museum to be displayed in 1997," offers Mr Lai, gazing at the already distinct likeness of President Ong. "I paint the back ground and his clothes from a picture, but for his face and hands, I have to get a van to bring the painting to the Istana and have him sit for me."
For the 59-year-old Mr Lai, painting dignitaries and important people - both local and foreign - is not at all unusual. After all, he has painted Senior Minister Lee Kuan Yew as well as the country's first elected government at its swearing-in ceremony in 1959.
Recent works include historical painting depicting the signing of the Japanese surrender treaty and a discussion led by General Percival as he decided on Britain's surrender of Singapore - each with a $300,000 price tag.
Not surprisingly, most of his portraits are commissioned by politicians, VIPs, doctors, bankers and professionals - many of them desiring to be preserved in the combination of European classical, Romantic and realistic tradition that Mr Lai excels in. And going by the life-like painting in the porch, they will not be disappointed.
"The face is the most important feature," explains Mr Lai, who prefers to converse in Mandarin. "Who Will want your painting if the face does not look like theirs? I also need to see their hands when I paint them, to capture the veins and folds of the skin. Then will it be realistic."
A perfectionist he might be, but that is what you would expect from a man who spent 15 years training in France, 10 of those at the prestigious Ecole Nationale Superieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris. In those years, he collected a whopping 44 medals for his artistic achievements, including the Knight and Officer of the French Order of Arts and Letters, as well as the Grand Prize from the French president.
The fact that he is an official restorer and copyist for masterpieces of the Louvre Museum shows the recognition of his talent and skills at precision work. Most of his works are in the collections of corporations, governments, museums and private individuals in Europe and the US.
And to think that his father wanted him to be a doctor. Mr Lai recalls: "My father, a mainland Chinese, said that in China, you can't make money as an artist - they're very poor - and if I were to become one, I'd be a beggar. As a doctor, even the poor and dying will pay for my services. But I told him the very smell of medicine makes me want to throw up!"
The truth is, Johor-born Mr Lai is blessed with artistic talent, something he cultivated as a five-year-old during the Japanese invasion. "When the Japanese troops moved in, my family went into the forest in Labis, Johor," says the chatty artist. "We didn't have a school, of course, so we'd just play with marbles, catch spiders, swim and fish. And I was so free, I started drawing."
As there were no pens or pencils available, he used charcoal. "I drew on the wooden walls of my home and I never understood why they left spaces between the boards," says Mr Lai with a laugh. "I drew the Japanese soldiers beating the Chinese!
"But basically, the environment in the forest was conducive. I drew snakes, butterflies, tigers - there were a lot of wild beasts then - and other animals that I saw around me. They were very beautiful and gave me inspiration"
As a youth, Mr Lai moved to Singapore, where he studied at the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts and was shortlisted for that important French government scholarship to train in Paris. Recognising his talent and Industry, his principal gave $250 -- a big sum in those days -- to the Alliance Francais, so he could learn the French language.
In the meantime, Mr Lai worked for Grant Advertising the biggest ad agency in those days, earning a fairly generous $500 a month. He says with a smile: "I was the one who drew the picture for all those old Esso gas, Nestle, Fab, Land Rover and Colgate ads."
In 1963, he was given the scholarship to France. "I heard that France was expensive and I only had a few thousand dollars in my bank then, so I didn't want to go," says Mr Lai. But after "a big scolding" from his mentors, he left for the Parisian training that would bring him his current status.
Since then, he has completed about 2,000 portraits. A six-month stint in Rome has also equipped him with the skills of a sculptor - an example of which is a bronze bust of the late Yeoh Ghim Seng a surgeon and former Speaker of Parliament.'
On busy days, Mr Lai paints for 2-1/2 hours each in the morning, afternoon and evening, spending about 10 months out of a year painting. Other than portraits, his paintings of landscapes and goldfish are also in demand. Depending on the size, Mr Lai's triple-layer oil portraits cost anywhere between $6,000 and $80,000 each.
Mr Lai's 54-year-old home-maker wife, 20-year-old son and 16-year-old daughter share his home cum workplace. In his home are also three or four cabinets crammed with Chinese antiques -- the result of a l0-year-old hobby. Like the haphazard way in which his living room is organised, carvings in different grades of jade share shelf space with crystal figurines, fine porcelain and bronze artefacts. Even his antique earthen wares are simply wrapped in plastic bags, totally free of the special lighting and display cases that most collectors are wont to have.
But while he is obviously delighted to share his fascination with these Chinese treasures, Mr Lai isn't at all keen to pass on his skills in painting.
"I feel very fortunate to have had the scholarship to learn. But if I were to be a teacher, I'd just stay at the same level, teaching students to paint apples and grapes," he explains. "Though it may sound a bit selfish, I can only have the time to improve myself as a full-time professional artist.
"Otherwise, I wouldn't have had the opportunity to paint Mr Lee Kuan Yew. right?"

Paris-Trained, World Class Portrait Artist Cum Sculptor 
From Singapore Acclaimed in Istana , Jakarta, Indonesia.



From Today, August 28,2002.

From Lianhe Zhaobao, August 27, 2002
Dr. Lai Kui-Fang (60), world-class artist, portraitist & sculptor, and Paris-trained French scholar and holder of Knight/Officer of the French Order of Arts & Letters by the French government recently finished a large oil painting masterpiece depicting the world shocking and tragically moving event in New York City, USA last September.

The large oil painting titled September 911 - America Under Attack is Dr Lai's most recent large scale painting, measuring 2m by 4m long. This oil masterpiece depicts the final terrifying moments of the Twin Tower office buildings collapsing after being hit by two commercial airlines respectively. And also captured on canvass are the chaotic mass of survivors running desperately away from the collapsing towers and their horrified looks that will forever remain etched in people mind around the world that witnessed this tragic incident on their TV sets.

Primarily, Dr. Lai's motivation to capture this tragic event on canvass this first globally shocking historical moment of the 21st century is for future generations of humanity to reflect upon the significance of this tragic day. For this objective, Dr. Lai has succeeded in capturing this historically significant moment.

To complete this oil painting, Dr. Lai spent 478 hours, including countless pencil sketches, revisions, contemplations and comments from his peers before the final moment is realistically drawn on canvass.

This oil masterpiece depicts about 260 human figures and faces, more than 100 firefighters, 34 office towers including the Manhattan bridge with the haunting silhouette of the Statute of Liberty in the distant background as seen from ground zero.
Painting Refer to [History Painting]

From the new paper, August 30, 2002