The Young Artist Award was introduced in 1992 to encourage the development of talents in Singapore. The Award is accorded to young artists aged 35 years and below who have demonstrated promise of artistic excellence. This Award will serve to encourage and support young artist who are at a crucial stage of their artistic development.

Presentation by Mr Lee Yock Suan, Minister of the Information and the Arts and Minister for the Environment on Friday, 24 September 1999 at Shangri-La Hotel.


For the 30-year old artist Chng Nai Wee, technology and science are both themes as well as artistic tools. Using the jargon of science acquired in his training for a career in Medicine, he has created a unique repertoire of fresh and engaging imagery redefining the delicate relationship between technology and artistic imagination and creativity.

Largely self-taught, Nai Wee enrolled into Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts for a part-time course under Han Sai Por in 1986. In 1993, he graduated from Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland qualified to practice medicine. His training as an artist was continued through extensive arts immersion visits to the arts capitals of Western Europe, Spain and Scandinavia, New York, Washington, Montreal, and China.

Upon his return from Ireland, Nai Wee painted extensively. In 1992, he received triple high commendation for Zen, The Autumn Dreams of Spring and Maelstrom in the UOB Painting of the Year. He also received honourable mentions for Motherboard and The Source in the 1994 Philip Morris Asean Art Awards. In 1995, he won the Dr Tan Tze Chor Art Award.

Nai Wee has participated in more than 20 group exhibitions in SIngapore, United Kingdom, France and Japan. In less than 10 years, he has had three solo exhibitions Recent Works, New Works and Biotechnics. He was one of the first artists to attempt to reach a wider audience through his internet websites when he began in early 1996.

The vitality of Nai Wee's artistic imagination and the uniqueness of his methodology have been noted in feature interviews and press reviews, He is currently working on another major exhibition to be held next year.