This exhibition features 54 selected artworks produced during the 1960s and 70s in Malaysia from the USM Fine Art Collection. The artworks, created by several prominent Malaysian artists, are now taken as an important treasure and markings for the narrative of modern art in Malaysia. Amongst them include the emergence of modernist influence in balancing the early dominance of naturalist style. Such emergence indirectly marked the drive of Malaysia, as a young country then, towards modernization. The 70s are marked amongst many, by several critical social episodes that left a deep and lingering impact towards the development of modern art in Malaysia.
Both decades, and artworks produced during the decades, can be used as substantial materials or research data for us to compare and reflect upon present situation, in regards to our social, political, economic, cultural and heritage contexts.
Amongst the featured artists are Hoessein Enas, Latif Mohidin, Syed Ahmad Jamal, Ruzaika Omar Bassaree, Patrick Ng Kah Onn, Seah Kim Joo, Chew Teng Beng, Dzulkilfi Buyong and Zulkifli Mohd Dahlan. They are considered as amongst the big names in Malaysia who have/had left a strong influence in the career of many contemporary artists today. It is no surprise then if these artworks from the USM Fine Art Collection are frequently used as references by many researchers and students from inside and outside Malaysia. Therefore, the Collection should also be kept and sustained professionally for the future generations.