Tan Lay Heong


Lay Heong is a visual and performing artist based in Penang. After completing her Associate Degree of Visual Arts from New Era College in 2007 she then pursued her Bachelor of Fine Arts at National Taiwan University of Arts, graduating in 2011. Her practice focuses primarily on installation art and shadow play performance which largely involves reused object and found materials with the goal to promote and encourage the idea of upcycling.

In 2015, Lay Heong co-found Plasticity Theatre Troupe, a contemporary shadow play performance group which uses only reused material to create their puppets and sets (pictured above). The troupe often touches upon socially-related topics such as environmental awareness and human rights issues in their works. The troupe has been touring their works in various place locally and internationally.

One of her latest installation artworks was the solo exhibition A Real Fake Forest (pictured above) which talks about environmental degradation due to human actions and which was featured in George Town Festival 2019, Hin Bus Depot Penang, and BELANG Exhibition 2020 at Penang State Art Gallery.

Joining the Rimbun Dahan residency, Lay Heong intends to expand her efforts in environmental care by merging natural materials around her residency surroundings in a shadow play which talks about to the energy and strength of nature (work in progress pictured below). As we live in turbulent times during this pandemic crisis, we need energy to keep us going and stay strong. Lay Heong believes the wisdom of nature is something we should learn to appreciate and the connection with nature might help us to retrieve the energy of life.