2019 UOB Painting of the Year

The Water is Wide

2019 Most Promising Artist of the Year
Emerging Artist Category


Artist: Casey Tan Jie Wei
Title: The Water is Wide
Medium: Acrylic on canvas
Size (cm): 120 x 100

The Water is Wide is inspired by the continuing crisis taking place across the world, where victims of humanitarian disasters are forced to undertake arduous journeys for survival. In a multitude of migrant faces, the artist sees a reflection of shared humanity – a profound and resonating struggle for safety, fulfillment, and a sense of home.

The artwork is framed in an enclosed space, set with stained glass hills and a hopeful sky as the backdrop, yet juxtaposed to induce a sense of compression and disorientation. The viewer is forced to confront the unspoken realities of human life. Yet, brief flashes of optimism are embedded to symbolise hope that is ever present even in the pit of despair.

Artist’s Bio

Casey Tan Jie Wei

Casey Tan Jie Wei

Mr Tan graduated from Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, Singapore in 2016 with a Diploma in Fine Art and was also a recipient of Ngee Ann Kongsi scholarship. Through his artworks, he seeks to bring to viewers a sense of adventure from ordinary or familiar experiences.