Malaysian artist uses her thumbprints to create portraits of country’s founding fathers to remember their Merdeka legacy

PETALING JAYA : If you look at Malaysian artist Vivian Ng Suet Yuan’s portrait of Tunku Abdul Rahman from afar, you would think it’s just a normal portrait painting.

But look closer, and you will notice thumbprints form the image of Malaysia’s father of independence using only three colours.null

Vivian Ng together with her thumbprint portraits of Tun Tan Cheng Lock, Tunku Abdul Rahman and Tun VT Sambanthan. — Picture courtesy of Vivian Ng
Vivian Ng together with her thumbprint portraits of Tun Tan Cheng Lock, Tunku Abdul Rahman and Tun VT Sambanthan. — Picture courtesy of Vivian Ng

She has also completed two thumbprint portraits of two prominent Malaysian figures who played important roles in attaining Malaysia’s independence — the late Tun Tan Cheng Lock and Tun VT Sambanthan.

The portraits of the two late politicians however were created using only black paint.

According to Ng, 28, this was her first time embarking on thumbprint portraits, with the one of Malaysia’s first prime minister Tunku Abdul Rahman measuring 180cm in length by 126cm in width, using a total of nine canvases.

Vivian Ng using her thumbprint to create the portrait of Tunku Abdul Rahman. — Picture courtesy of Vivian Ng
Vivian Ng using her thumbprint to create the portrait of Tunku Abdul Rahman. — Picture courtesy of Vivian Ng

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“A thumbprint is the most important identity of a person and is unique to each person, which also symbolises the unique multicultural identity in Malaysia.

“Our founding fathers, Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Tan Cheng Lock and Tun VT Sambanthan were important figures in the forming of our country’s independence a long time ago.

“They went to London to negotiate the country’s independence, and finally secured immediate independence from the British government,” she explained.

“And what better way to appreciate their joint efforts in helping us gain our Merdeka and be united as Malaysians than to create their portraits?”

Ng said she learned thumbprint painting from Youtube videos.

“I learned the thumbprint techniques from Youtube.

“I only used three colours which are black, yellow and red as it also signifies the diversity of races here in our country.”

The 28-year-old also said that the thumbprint portraits invoke a feeling of being ‘alive’ in the viewer.

“It feels as though the painting is alive with the thumbprints, and the viewer is able to resonate with the feeling of the painter,” she said.

Ng is also the founder of Niuniu’s Gallery where she also has other portraits and anybody keen can surf over tohttps://niuniusgallery.wixsite.com/mysite/contact

BY : ANNE GRACE SAVITHA – MALAY MAIL

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