NUS Giving Experience: Masterclass Series – An Afternoon of Art with NUS Centre For the Arts: Ng Eng Teng, His Practice and the Collection

An Afternoon of Art with NUS Centre For the Arts“It is what you see in the sculpture that is more important than me, telling you what it is. In Art, no one is wrong in their interpretation.”

Ms Maureen Ng, sister of the late artist Mr Ng Eng Teng, quoted him during the NUS Giving Experience series titled An Afternoon of Art with NUS Centre For the Arts: Ng Eng Teng, His Practice and the Collection.

Jointly organised by the National University of Singapore (NUS) Development Office and the NUS Centre For the Arts (CFA), it was an inaugural reveal of the 1905 Donor Experience Room, an exclusive environment created to engage our donors in an intimate setting. Ms Sharon Tan, Director, CFA, welcomed the guests and thanked them for their support which enabled CFA to be the only full-fledged arts centre within a university and an integral part of the transformative education in NUS. The bespoke space was transformed into an art gallery, where some of Mr Ng’s sculptures were displayed. Invited guests gathered for an intimate sharing session to learn more about Mr Ng’s practice, collections and sculptures.

An Afternoon of Art with NUS Centre For the Arts, DonorsNicknamed 'The Grandfather of Singapore Sculpture', Mr Ng Eng Teng (b. 1934 - d. 2001) was an acclaimed Singaporean sculptor who is known for his pioneering use of ciment fondu and his figurative sculptures, which many can be found in popular public locations around Singapore, such as Orchard Road and the Civic District.

“When you look at Mr Ng’s public sculpture and studio ceramic pieces, you will realise that he is very aware that art is an integral part of our environment and surroundings,” explained Ms Chang Yueh Siang, Curator, NUS Museum.

“With over 1,100 artworks donated to the University, including the ones displayed in this room, Mr Ng always had a heart to share, to teach and for his work to be used for broader education,” Ms Chang elaborated.

An Afternoon of Art with NUS Centre For the Arts, SculptureMs Tan Wei Xin (’20), NUS Museum Outreach Trainee also shared her experience working as both an intern and a trainee at the NUS Museum. “As I look back on my experience thus far and embark on the final months of my traineeship, I’ve come to realise that the museum, far from being a static repository of artworks, is a dynamic and fluid site. Much of what we do at Outreach is about activating different interests and providing various points of entry to the museum and its exhibitions, as well as building dialogue and conversations around them… I’m immensely grateful for my time at the NUS Museum and the traineeship opportunity, which has granted me invaluable insights and many concrete takeaways.”

Ms Tan was an NUS graduate from the NUS Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences and an NUS Museum intern from May 2020 to July 2020. She is currently working at the NUS Museum as a trainee under the NUS Resilience and Growth Programme.

During the Q&A session, artist Ms Hong Sek Chern, shared her encounter with Mr Ng during an event in the late 80s which inspired her to enter the Arts scene.

“He was willing to share, generous with his knowledge and very inspiring.”

For further information on the NUS Giving Experience Series, contact the Events team at dvoevents@nus.edu.sg.