[Published on 22 September, 2002]
Tai-tais, the darlings of designer boutiques, luxurious spas and
top-notch restaurants, are baring their bodies to total strangers.
So are well-paid professional women and housewives with young children.
Money is changing hands too, and it is not going to the nude models.
The naked truth is that women in conservative Singapore are paying
artists up to $30,000 to depict them nude.
Unlike the current exhibition of nude paintings at the Singapore Art
Museum, these portraits will probably never appear in a public space.
They belong in the privacy of the customers' bedrooms.
In most cases, the subject commissions the work as a gift for her spouse.
Depending on the artist and the size of the painting, the price tag
can range from $3,000 to $30,000.