The Arts

Lim Wei-Ling

Lim Wei-Ling is one of the few names synonymous with the art scene in Malaysia

Profile


Lim Wei-Ling is known for taking Malaysian art international and developing the national art scene by supporting and nurturing emerging local artists. A jewellery designer and art history major by training, she did a stint at a jewellery house before unexpectedly becoming a stockbroker for eight years. Remaining an artist at heart, she took a year off to paint. Although reluctant at first, she gave in to her husband Yohan Rajan’s suggestion of a solo exhibition. This led to other artists requesting to exhibit their works at her studio, fortuitously propelling her into the art business and the first Wei-Ling Gallery.

Having no experience in running a gallery, she learned along the way and trusted her intuition to guide her in her next steps. She not only took Malaysian art beyond its borders, but her gallery was the first in Malaysia to introduce its artists at reputable art fairs like Art Basel Hong Kong, Art Taipei and Korea International Art Fair. In 2019, she helped establish the first Malaysian pavilion at the 58th International Art Exhibition of the Venice Biennale in Italy.

In addition to countless art exhibitions, her gallery is also the biggest publisher of artists’ books and catalogues in the country. The next big milestone is in 2022, when Wei-Ling Gallery will mark its 20th anniversary. Besides managing her galleries, Lim recently assumed a new role as the president of Badan Warisan Malaysia (Malaysian Heritage Trust), an NGO which champions and preserves the country’s heritage, which was co-founded by her father Prof Dr Jimmy Lim.

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Lim comes from an artistic family. Her father is the prominent, award-winning Malaysian architect Prof Dr Jimmy Lim, while her mother Winnie Cheah is a professional violinist. 

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