Masturah Sha’ari started painting seriously in 2016, though she has been drawing since young, even winning a few neighbourhood children’s art competitions. She paints mostly abstracts, including abstract landscapes, using soft gestures and colourful strokes of acrylic on canvas, to convey emotions. She has exhibited her works in Singapore, Malaysia and Vietnam. With an MA in Asian Art Histories from Goldsmiths University of London, a BA in Economics and Malay Studies from National University of Singapore, and a Diploma in Design Communication from LASALLE College of the Arts, Masturah actively contributes to the art community. Currently, she serves as the Vice-President of Angkatan Pelukis Aneka Daya (APAD) and chaired Voices & Visions: Singapore Women Artists Exhibition 2021.
Co-founding Maya Gallery in 2012, she is dedicated to promoting Singapore artists internationally. Masturah has mentored female university students at NUS and spoken at museums and institutions. Her commitment to the arts is evident through her numerous accomplishments, including curating exhibitions, designing, writing, and publishing catalogues, and conducting art talks for the public.
“Abstract art serves as a medium for me to explore the concept of freedom and space, expressing my deepest emotions. In my abstract landscape series, I aim to capture the tranquility of a place be it rural or urban. Being a mother of three, having gone through stages of isolation from leaving the corporate world and delving into self-employment in the creative industries, and at the same time trying to balance corporate work, passions and family, it can get truly overwhelming. Being in my pop-up studio helps me unwind and get into my own space, where I can break some rules and allow surprises to happen.”
Huu Nghi: Singapore & Vietnam 50-10 Exhibition
“My abstract paintings capture the blooms of Hanoi's spring and inspirations drawn from trips to Vietnam’s waterscapes. Beyond landscapes, they're the beating heart of communities for generations. The Red River tells tales of resilience; Hoan Kiem Lake of magic, and Halong Bay of ancient legends and timeless beauty. Hoi An's rivers embody the spirit of trade, and Nim Binh’s waterway weaves through rice paddies and temples. These waters echo the relationship between man and environment. The artworks harmonise to articulate narratives of mutual cooperation and cultural exchange, reminding us of Vietnam and Singapore’s partnership. The strokes, both fluid and deliberate, mirror the rhythm of our diplomatic relations, inviting viewers to contemplate on the journey we traverse together, our shared history and blossoming aspirations.”