Malaysian Artist Profile: Yap Kim Boon

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“The beauty of nature is all around us, yet most people living in cities live their life without slowing down even while they are walking just to appreciate and enjoy the stunning beauty of local scenery. I tend to interpret the beauty of nature with my instinct and nature is the base of my inspirations; recreating nature onto painting canvases. After all, the painting is not just on a piece of canvas, but it’s a lively image, with the essence of nature with all its soothing and calming elements. I hope you will find ‘A Stroll Through Nature’ an experience like a virtual walk in nature.”

I’ve known Yap Kim Boon for 13 years. The first six months after I joined TEG, I held another job as the Founder and Director of the Volvo Art Gallery. My instructions were to feature three expat artists and one local. After poring over hundreds of artist submissions, I came upon Yap’s. Immediately I knew this was my artist. His paintings were not the highest skilled in composition, nor was his technique matured, but each of his paintings conveyed an earnestness, an honesty, a beauty of nature that really touched me. Yap was a big success at that first exhibition and shortly thereafter, we put him on the Expat cover. In fact, he holds the record for most covers, six, and this is dictated mostly by popular demand. People love his paintings because they are the type you would like to hang in your own home and look at because they were comforting, beautiful, and genuine.

Since that year of 2000, I’ve done many exhibitions with Yap and watched him mature as an artist. I’ve been continually impressed with his courage to venture into different types of compositions, the use of different colours (the first few years he used only blues, greens and whites), and his exploration of doing buildings, landscapes, and flora, as well as honing his expertise in his most well-known genre of the heliconia flower, native to Malaysia. He learned how to use illusions of movement in his figures, buildings, and flowers and has become an accomplished artist of great renown.

Yap is a graduate of the Malaysian Institute of Art, which has produced many successful artists over the years. He took up graphic designing and he spent years teaching illustrating at the Inspire Academy of Art. He decided in 1999 to resign his paid jobs and go full time as an artist, and he selected the genre of plein air, or painting outdoors.

He is also the inventor of special palette brushes that enables the artist to create deeply textured and contoured paintings. Some of his paintings have a great depth of oils and acrylics on them which adds emphasis to the compositions. He loves to go deep into the woods for a few days and paint what he sees. Sometimes he photographs the scenery so he can perfect his images at his home studio. For over 13 years, Yap has been collected by some of the most prestigious art collectors in the world, (he has held art exhibitions in the US) and his work is hung in the offices of major multinational companies, as well as throughout the lobby and patient floors of a prominent KL-area hospital.

About five years ago, he decided to add onto his home in Ampang and created his own art gallery, thus able to cut out the middlemen who take a majority of an artist’s profits.

He has specially selected these new paintings just for Expat readers with special rates. If you are interested in purchasing them for yourself or as a gift for someone special, please contact me at [email protected].



Source: The Expat September 2013

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