2018 UOB Painting of the Year


Highly Commended
Emerging Artist Category


Artist: Ava Kong Jia Ying
Title: Whispers
Medium: Oil on canvas
Size (cm): 51 x 122

Whispers is an intimate look into the artist’s inner thoughts on what others are saying and thinking, and her emotions regarding these actions.

A triptych focusing on key actions and expressions that seem to suggest gossip, judgement and chatter, the artwork invites viewers to think, ‘What are they saying and thinking?’, ‘Are they staring and pointing at me?’, ‘Is there anything wrong with me?’.

Whispers thus opens up the invitation for viewers to step into the shoes of the artist, taking on the role of one who is being viewed and judged, evoking a sense of vulnerability and isolation that results from these direct actions but yet ambiguous intentions of the subjects portrayed.

Artist’s Bio

Ava Kong Jia Ying

Ava Kong Jia Ying

Ms Kong sees art as a language of emotions which speaks louder than words. To her, art communicates the artist’s emotions and connects the artist and viewer on an emotional level through shared experiences or memories.