Congrats to Joel Yuen who has done the photographic community in Singapore proud by winning the grand prize of $30,000.
This is a big step of recognition for photography in Singapore as an important medium in contemporary art.
his website can be viewed here
12 July 2008, Singapore
Freelance lensman Joel Yuen was elated when he was informed of his big win at this year's UOB Painting Of The Year (POY) Competition. His winning work, a series of archival inkjet print photographs, entitled Anatomical Fantasies of Meat, clinched the top spot in the POY Competition, a first in POY history.
Joel who is also an undergraduate pursuing Photography and Digital Imaging studies with the School of Design, Art and Media at the Nanyang Technological University, said, "During the production of my work, I faced a lot of internal skepticism and struggles because being Singaporean, practising contemporary art (photography) can be a great challenge for acceptance and understanding, by both art professionals and enthusiasts. Therefore, winning this prestigious award is an affirmation that risk-taking and originality can lead to a very rewarding experience."
The Photography Category was introduced in 2003 in view of the increasing interest in photography. Since the inclusion of this Category, there has been an overwhelming number of entries from budding photographers and professionals.
Chief Judge Mr Choo Thiam Siew, President of Nanyang Academy Of Fine Arts, said, "Since the inclusion of the Photography Category in the UOB POY five years ago, it certainly has stimulated interest in this field. The fact that this year's POY winner is from the Photography Category goes to show the catalystic effect the POY has on local art development."
He added, "The number of entries this year also reflects the strong interest and high regard for the annual UOB POY. With a population of over four million in Singapore and a total of 1,200 submissions, that's indeed very encouraging."
Mr Raymond Lim, Minister for Transport and Second Minister for Foreign Affairs presented the prizes, trophies and certificates to the winners at the Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay. UOB gave away a total of $76,200 in cash prizes. This year, the prize for the overall winner was increased to $30,000.
"Over the years, the Competition has discovered many talents, and also given some of the winners the extra boost of confidence to go into arts full time. I applaud UOB for its continued efforts and urge other corporate organisations to follow this road less taken," said Mr Lim.
Mr Wee Ee Cheong, Deputy Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of UOB Group said, "The POY is our flagship project in support of the arts, in line with the Bank's broader community development efforts. We focus on children, education and the arts. The UOB Art Committee reviews the structure of the POY periodically to ensure that the Competition is in sync with moving trends of the local visual arts scene. I am pleased that this year, the annual POY has broken new ground - we have a winner from the Photography Category, a first in POY history."
Please refer to Annex 1 (PDF: 133KB) for the full list of winners.
The 27th UOB Painting of The Year Exhibition
All award-winning and highly-commended entries will be exhibited at the 27th UOB Painting Of The Year Exhibition:
12 July to 2 August 2008
Jendela (Visual Arts Space by Cristal Caritas Trust),
Esplanade - Theatres on the Bay
Time: 11.00am to 8.30pm (Mon – Fri)
10.00am to 8.30pm (Sat & Sun)