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Chong Ai Lei’s (b. 1984) contemplative paintings steal glimpses into the private moments of her subjects. Depicted in intimate settings, Chong delicately captures the inner thoughts, underlying emotions and psyche of these often lone female figures as they relax, unaware of the viewer’s gaze. In one work, Chong visualises the internal struggle with conflicting feelings through a portrayal of two female figures intertwined in a variety of poses that hint at the state of their relationship. In another, a young girl languishes on the grass in the sun, conveying a sense of playful dynamism and freedom, confidence and self-indulgence. The different compositions express our universal search for a state of balance when confronted with dilemmas and challenges, whether these are caused by fear, loss or desire.


Chong studied Fine Arts at Dasein Academy of Art in Kuala Lumpur. A winner of the Malaysian Emerging Artist Award in 2011, she has shown her works in numerous group and solo exhibitions internationally and attracted a steady following of art collectors.

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