Born in Singapore, Arthur Yap (1943-2006) painted more frequently only after he graduated from the University of Singapore in 1965. A self-taught artist, he learnt through art magazines, exhibitions and trips to Europe in the 1970s. At the same time, he participated actively in the local art scene, holding six solo exhibitions and exhibiting in numerous group shows from 1968. In 1972, he was one of the Singapore representatives to the Adelaide Festival of Arts. Recognized as one of the country’s foremost poets with three published collections of poems, Yap was awarded the Cultural Medallion for literature by the Singapore government in 1983.Like many of Singapore’s Second Generation artists, Yap’s art is grounded in the experimentation and development of the abstract art movement. Lines, forms and colours were his predominant concerns. The Black and White series, which Yap began in 1975, culminated in his sixth solo show and was also published in his poetry collection, ‘Commonplace’, in 1977. A feature of this series is the containment of amorphous forms within a rigid structure, underscoring their contrasting qualities. In ‘Black and White Series: No. 1’ the structures are then stacked as if a framed picture on a wall, thereby affirming the rigidity.