Guo-Liang Tan (b. Singapore) is a visual artist working primarily in the field of painting, from which works in other
mediums such as text, collage and video sometimes emerge. In his work, surfaces, painterly or otherwise, become a space for performing gestures of affect and conjuring a haunting that converses with the ghosts of abstraction. Gaps and overlaps, traces and fragmentation feature prominently in Tan’s making process. He is interested in how this frames and orientates our sense of time, body and memory.
Tan completed his BA in Fine Art & Critical Studies at Goldsmiths College, London and his MFA at Glasgow School of Art. He was also a guest student at The Städelschule, Frankfurt am Main, Germany and an artist-in-residence at the NTU Centre of
Contemporary Art. He is a recipient of Singapore National Arts Council Scholarship as well as the Mackendrick Scholarship and the Antje und Jürgen Conzelmann Preis for painting. He was also a finalist in the Sovereign Asian Art Prize 2018.
His work has been exhibited and collected in Asia and Europe. Past and recent exhibitions include his solo presentations ‘Ghost Screens’ (2017) and ‘Soft Turnings’ (2021) at Ota Fine Arts, Singapore, ‘A Different Way
Of (Thinking About) Painting?’ (2017) at Langgeng Art Foundation, Yogyakarta, ‘Ethereal Machines’ (2018) at Ota Fine Arts, Shanghai, ‘DEPTHS: Others, Lands, Selves’ (2018) at Elevation Laos, Vientiane, ‘Reformations’ (2019) at NTU ADM Gallery,
Singapore, ‘Strange Forms of Life’ (2020) at STPI Gallery, Singapore, ‘Object of Desire’ (2020) at Gerðarsafn Kópavogur Art Museum, Iceland and ‘Re-surfacing’ (2023) at STORAGE, Bangkok.
Tan belongs to a generation of artists whose creative output extends beyond his own studio practice. Alongside his own work, he also collaborates with other artists on curatorial and publication projects, including ‘Aversions’ and ‘Found & Lost’ (2009) for Osage Gallery, ‘We Who Saw Signs’ (2011) for Institute of Contemporary Arts Singapore, ‘Side Affects’ (2019) for Ota Fine Arts and ‘State Of Motion 2020: Rushes Of Time’ for Asian Film Archive.