PETALING JAYA, June 12 — Malaysian artist Kamwei Fong’s love for portly cats has landed him a collaboration with Japanese fast-fashion retailer Uniqlo.

Launched this month in Malaysia and already selling like hot cakes here and abroad, Fong joins three other illustrators — Parisian author Tiffany Cooper, Japanese artist Izuru Aminaka and Stockholm-based graphic designer Marie Ahfeldt — for the feline-themed T-shirt collection “Cats are Purrfect.”

The collection is currently available in Japan, Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Russia, Taiwan, Hong Kong, South Korea, Spain, Germany, Italy, Denmark, Sweden and Vietnam with more countries to come.

“This collaboration is considered another great achievement added to my career as an artist.

“I’m Malaysian but I’m not really active in the local art scene,” Fong told Malay Mail.

His work has been exhibited at the Salon des Beaux Arts in Paris, France and Art Expo Malaysia while his original art pieces, art prints and ceramic sculptures can be found in Galerie Club Sensible in Paris.

For the uninitiated, his works mainly focus on minimalist drawings of cute animals whose curious personalities are brought to life using only a fine line pen.

Fong previously worked as a creative in the advertising, design and branding industry in Petaling Jaya and Kuala Lumpur for almost two decades before becoming a fulltime artist in 2017.



Finally arrived!! 😃Thank you @uniqlo and @gas_as_interface for sending these UT “Cats are Purrfect!” tees. Here’s my short interview on this collaboration with Uniqlo by Gas As Interface, Tokyo, Japan 🇯🇵Special thanks to Nari Ota and Anne Yano for managing, coordinating the project and assisting me all this while in this collaboration 🥰 . . Updates: Uniqlo UT “Cats are Purrfect!” is now in Japan 🇯🇵, Malaysia 🇲🇾, Canada 🇨🇦, UK 🇬🇧, France 🇫🇷, Russia 🇷🇺, Taiwan 🇹🇼, Hong Kong 🇭🇰, South Korea 🇰🇷, Spain 🇪🇸, Germany 🇩🇪, Italy 🇮🇹, Denmark 🇩🇰, Sweden 🇸🇪, Vietnam 🇻🇳 and more to come! . . . . #catsarepurrfect #uniqlo #gasasinterface #kamweifong #kamweiatwork #tshirt #cat #kitty #artistlovescat #collaboration #catillustration #felineart #japan

A post shared by Kamwei Fong (@kamweiatwork) on

His calling card in the art world is arguably a series of furry animal illustrations named The Furry Thing which includes stocky kitties that cat lovers wouldn’t be able to resist.

One of the felines, the bushy-tailed and paunchy Kitty No. 25, makes an appearance in the Uniqlo collection.

“My creations are often described as poetic, humourous, imaginative, playful and dream-like.

“All the kitties in The Furry Thing series have the same DNA, they’re quirky, funny, mysterious, sometimes angry and ridiculous,” he said of his cats’ personalities.



😷🙏🏻♥️🌏🌎🌍❌🦠 . . #cat #kitty #art #illustration #mask #coronavirus #besafe

A post shared by Kamwei Fong (@kamweiatwork) on

Asked how chubby cats became his signature, Fong said he developed The Furry Thing by accident back in 2009 and that the process helped him stay focused, much like meditation.

“Cats are cool, mysterious creatures with strong characteristics, and my minimalist style cat drawings of mine which often without mouth, paws, nose, whiskers are my interpretation and imagination of them.

“Personally, I love things which are round and chubby, but sometimes I also draw skinny cats, and other animals,” he added.

Find out more about the collection here or visit Fong’s Instagram page.