OCAD University
Chinkok Tan
Assistant Professor
Faculty of Art
416-977-6000, Ext. 1974

Area(s) of Expertise

Watercolour, Oil, Acrylic


Chinkok Tan is a practicing painter and published author.

He has written several books, created hundreds of large scale paintings and exhibited internationally in Malaysia, Korea, U.K., U.S. and Canada. His works are held in public and private collections throughout the world.

Tan's love for visual expression began when he was nine. By age fourteen he became aware that all things can be rendered through the visualization of shapes and their Light values. He developed a light value scale for painting that functions much like the notes scale in music. Since then, he has put his theory to practice and has helped hundreds of student develop their own visual language. His fully illustrated instruction book 'Watercolor Basics: Shape & Light value' is sold all over the world. Tan's work of the last three decades has centered on the pattern of shape, color and light values created by light filtering past leaves and branches to illuminate forest floors. Readers can view examples of his work by going to his web site http://www.chinkoktan.com

Tan instructed at the Corcoran School of Art in Washington D.C. in 1988. With the exception of that year, he has taught at OCAD since 1976.


- Ontario College of Art & Design 1967-71.

- Specialist Teachers' Training Institute, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia 1965-66.

- Teacher Training College, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 1960-62

Professional Experience

- Exhibited in one man and group shows since 1956 in Malaysia, Canada, Korea, U.K. and U.S.

- Assistant Professor at OCAD since 1976.

-Professor, Corcoran School of Art, Washington D.C., 1998

Selected Exhibitions

2009 - Fairmont Algonquin Hotel, St. Andrews, N.B.

2008 - Museum Gallery, Todmorden Mills, Toronto

2008 - Fairmont Algonquin Hotel, St. Andrews, N.B.

2007 - Fairmont Algonquin Hotel, St. Andrews, N.B.

2006 - Museum Gallery, Todmorden Mills, Toronto

2006 - World Art Festival, Seoul, South Korea

2005 - Discovery 2005, Consulate Gallery of South Korea, Toronto

2004 - Museum Gallery, Todmorden Mills, Toronto

2003 - Gallery 401, Toronto

1997 - Studio 6108, Bethesda, Maryland, U.S.

Awards \ Grants

1984 - Honorable Mention, International Artists in Watercolor Competition, U.K.

1978 - Best Watercolor, 6th Annual Multicultural Fine Art Exhibition, Toronto

1977 - Best Watercolor, 5th Annual Multicultural Fine Art Exhibition, Toronto.

1971 - Best Watercolor, 10th Annual Toronto Outdoor Art Exhibition, City Hall, Toronto

1971 - Best Graphic, C.N.E. Art Exhibition

1970 - 2nd Prize, Ontario College of Art Photographic Contest.

1969 - Best Watercolor, Grimsby Festival of Art, Grimsby, On.

1968 - Rous and Mann Press Ltd Scholarship, OCA, Toronto

1967 - Hughes Owens Company Ltd Scholarship, OCA. Toronto


1998 - St. Elizabeth Home Society, Hamilton, On.

Selected Publications

2001 - Watercolor Basics - Shape & Light Value.

Publisher: F.W. Publication, Cincinnati, Ohio, U.S.

2001 - Watercolour Basics - Shape & Light Value.

Publisher: David & Charles, Brunel House, Newton Abbot, Devon, U.K.

1989 - Wildflowers - one of a kind book

1980 - Wildflowers - one of a kind book

1973 - Toronto - A limited edition serigraph book of Toronto.

Professional Affiliations / Boards / Juries

2008 - Juror, Arts & Letters Club Scholarship

2007 - Juror, Arts & Letters Members' Art Show