Homo Faber

PRESS EN Languages Account Follow us Newsletter
Subscribe to our newsletter
|
Presented by logo Homo Faber by Michelangelo Foundation
Explore Discover Visit Experience Itineraries About
© Johanna El Iman
© Johanna El Iman
Nicky Loh © Michelangelo Foundation
© Johanna El Iman
Nicky Loh © Michelangelo Foundation

Raymond Ng Yeow Hua

Raymond Ng Yeow Hua Wood sculptor
Contact
Mandarin, English
Hours:
Monday to Saturday 10:00 - 20:00
Phone:
+65 91262074
Nicky Loh © Michelangelo Foundation

Maker of gods

  • • Raymond hand makes Taoist and Buddhist wooden effigies
  • • His business has been in the family since 1896
  • • His pieces narrate ancient Chinese religious beliefs, legends and philosophies

Raymond Ng Yeow Hua is from a family that has been making Taoist and Budhist effigies by hand for over 100 years. The hand-carved painted statues of various gods that Taoists and Budhists worship demonstrate extraordinary levels of detail and skill. The painstaking art of effigy-making starts with a wood block which is first handcarved into the likeness of a certain deity. The sculpture is then hand-painted and emblazoned with different symbolic motifs. The whole process takes about a month to complete. Raymond uses a family secret handed down over generations for the material he uses to decorate his statues. Unfortunately, due to cheaper mass production and a sharp decrease in manpower, it is a vanishing trade. Raymond, with his family, are believed to be the last shop of their kind keeping the craft alive in Singapore. To reinvent the business and expand it to a secular, international audience, his children have started involving designers and theatre practitioners. His eldest son, aged 42, also started apprenticing in the shop in 2021.

Read the full interview

Works

  • Nicky Loh © Michelangelo Foundation
  • Nicky Loh © Michelangelo Foundation
  • Nicky Loh © Michelangelo Foundation
Photo: Nicky Loh © Michelangelo Foundation
Xuan Tian Shang Di effigy

This rare effigy represents Xuan Tian Shang Di, one of the most powerful deities of the Taoist religion. The figure is clad in golden flowing robes, seated in a relaxed position. Motifs of flowers made from sandalwood and ash dough thread adorn his robes.

Length 9 cm
Width 9 cm
Height 21 cm

Photo: Nicky Loh © Michelangelo Foundation
Xuan Tian Shang Di effigy

The figure of Xuan Tian Shang Di Taoist deity is clad in gold armour and military helmet, with a sash swirling about him. His right hand is at his waist, cupped and ready for the sword adorned with the Big Dipper star constellation being inserted.

Length 20 cm
Width 20 cm
Height 40 cm

Photo: Nicky Loh © Michelangelo Foundation
Hu Ye effigy 'the Tiger God'

The tiger statue is semi-prostrate, leaning downwards upon a blue and red pedestal adorned with white petals. Its head is turned sharply to the side, revealing wide green-blue eyeballs, frizzy whiskers, a gaping mouth and pearly-white teeth.

Length 20 cm
Width 13 cm
Height 26 cm

You may also like

Download the app

Find all the Homo Faber Guide content at hand, save, like and much more!