Within a square inch: the art of seal carving

Wee Beng Chong
南洋美专珍藏
1985
Steatite
2.5 x 2.5 x 6 cm
Collection of Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts


Seals have occupied a central position in Chinese culture and remains a valued and vital tradition of Chinese art. Originally, seals were used mainly in government offices as a sign of authority, and later as an instrument for signing important legal documents by the government, institutions and individuals. Inextricably linked to calligraphy - the art of fine, scholarly writing and painting, Chinese seal carving gradually evolved into a delicate, precise art form all on its own. Applied to works of art as a signature or a sign of ownership, the curvilinear lines in the seals can look as abstract or expressionist as a modern painting, or appear as whimsical, philosophical, or metaphoric and concise as a poem. The exhibition features seal carving, paintings and calligraphy by eminent artists and calligraphers, including See Hiang To, Tan Kian Por and Wee Beng Chong.

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