Even at a young age, KY Huang could sketch and pint but art was not a rewarding vocation. During his undergrad days, KY helped man exhibitions for the grandmaster Lee Man Fong. From this renowned artist he learned the finer points in composition, balance and form.
After graduation, KY pursued a corporate career which enabled him to acquire art on a regular basis. He got to know many of Singapore’s pioneer artists (such as Seah Kim Joo, Thomas Yeo, Chen Wen Hsi and others) on a personal basis. Occasionally, he would attend evening art classes at Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts and People’s Association (PA).
In 2007, KY retired from the corporate world and in pursuit of his first love, he started an art gallery with some friends. He travelled extensively around Southeast Asia acquiring artworks by promising artists. In managing them, he observed that many of these artists had formal art education and good techniques but seemed to lack the “feel, instinct and eye” to create winning compositions and concepts.
He mentored some of the artists and shared what he knew. The improvements in the artworks by artists using his concepts and approach were evident. Encouraged by these events, Huang felt confident enough to conduct a series of workshops for PA and also helped put together a successful competition and art exhibition at Chingay 2011. It was during one of these workshops that the thought of creating his own artworks came to KY.