Tan Swie Hian
Tan Swie Hian

Celebrity Profile

Name: Tan Swie Hian
Occupation: Sculptor
Gender: Male
Birth Day: May 5, 1943
Age: 79
Country: Indonesia
Zodiac Sign: Taurus

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Height: in centimeters - N/A
Weight: in kg - N/A
Eye Color: N/A
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Blood Type N/A
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Tan Swie Hian

Tan Swie Hian was born on May 5, 1943 in Indonesia (79 years old). Tan Swie Hian is a Sculptor, zodiac sign: Taurus. Find out Tan Swie Hiannet worth 2020, salary 2020 detail bellow.


His painting, "The Moon is Orbed," sold for $3.7 million.

Net Worth

Net Worth 2020


Salary 2020

Not known

Before Fame

He studied English and French at Nanyang University before serving as the Press Attaché for the French Embassy in Singapore.

Biography Timeline


Born in Indonesia, Tan migrated to Singapore circa 1946. He grew up with a fluency in Chinese and Malay language, and went on to study English and French at the Nanyang University. He began his career life as press attaché for the French Embassy in Singapore, after graduating with a degree in English literature from the University. While working as an attaché he continued pursuing his passion for art. His first foray into the Singapore arts scene was with his first collection of poetry writing titled The Giant in 1968 and held his first art exhibition at the National Library on Stamford Road in 1973. He also converted to his faith to Buddhism in that year; his newfound spiritual experience outweighed his passion for the arts that made him give up painting for the next four years. It was only when the-then French Embassy cultural attaché Michel Deverge threatened to end their friendship if he didn't pursue his art again, that Tan resume painting. Deverge went on to organize a successful exhibition of Tan's new creations at the Gauguin Museum in Tahiti. After 24 years with the Embassy Tan left his position to pursue art full-time.

Since his first poetry collection The Giant in 1968, Tan went on to publish 35 publications of poetry, essays and stories. In 1978, Tan was conferred the Chavalier de I'Ordre des Arts et Lettres by French Government for his initiatory Chinese translations of works by Beckett and Romanian writer Marin Sorescu. In 1987, he was awarded the Cultural Medallion in Singapore. In 1998, he won the Marin Sorescu International Poetry Prize in Romania.


Tan has been recognised as Singapore's most expensive artist after he sold his oil-and-acrylic painting, When the Moon is Orbed, for approximately S$3.7m at an auction in Beijing in 2012.

In 2012, fellow Cultural Medallion recipient Yeng Pway Ngon, the Chinese-language novelist, was ordered to pay $10,000 in damages and $20,000 in costs to Tan. Tan had accused Yeng of libelling him in a 2005 letter which the latter had sent to The Straits Times and the National Arts Council.


In October 2014, Tan completed a painting of former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew and his late wife Kwa Geok Choo entitled A Couple. The painting, which took Tan five years to complete, was partially damaged by a fire in 2013. It depicts Lee and Kwa in their youth, is based on a 1946 black-and-white photograph of the couple in Cambridge University, and incorporates in its background Tan's poem written in memory of Kwa. Tan said, "I've always felt [Madam Kwa] was a great woman who, despite her intelligence and capability, was also a humble and dedicated wife." A Couple was purchased by art collector Wu Hsioh Kwang.

Family Life

Tan moved with his family to Singapore when he was an infant.

🎂 Upcoming Birthday

Currently, Tan Swie Hian is 80 years, 0 months and 29 days old. Tan Swie Hian will celebrate 81st birthday on a Sunday 5th of May 2024. Below we countdown to Tan Swie Hian upcoming birthday.


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