Rare honour: Delwin displaying the letter and photos from Obama. With him during the press conference at Lost Paradist Resort, Batu Ferringhi are his parents and nine-year-old sister Delwina Cheah Kah Yan.
GEORGE TOWN: The country’s first autistic savant artist Delwin Cheah Wien Loong, 11, added another feather to his cap when he received a letter of recognition from US President Barack Obama.
Delwin, who was recognised as the world’s youngest autistic savant artist to hold a solo exhibition by RecordSetter – a US-based social media website featuring world records by the public – last November, received the letter dated July 14 from the White House.
His parents, business manager Lawrence Cheah Guan Keong and Erina Law Mei Sun, a food designer, were surprised when they received the letter at their business premises in Tanjung Tokong on Aug 11.
“We had not sent any of Delwin’s artwork to him (Obama).
“He might have received a copy of the book I Can Draw, which is a compilation of Delwin’s artwork, during his visit to Malaysia in April,” Law told a press conference at the Lost Paradise Resort on Thursday.
The letter read: “Dear Delwin, thank you for your kind gift, and for sharing your artwork. I appreciate your thoughtfulness.
“The world needs young people like you who are trying hard in school, serving your community and dreaming big dreams. We face many challenges, but with your help, we can build on what we have already achieved and forge a brighter tomorrow.
“Thank you again for the wonderful gift. I wish you and your family all the best.”
Law said when she and her husband explained the letter to Delwin, he just smiled.
“He knows who Obama is, and he may do an artwork for him as a thank-you gesture,” she added.
Attached with the letter were a signed photograph of Obama and two photographs of his pet dogs Bo and Sunny, as well as leaflets with information on the White House.
Delwin held his first solo art exhibition on Feb 2 last year, and he was listed in the Malaysia Book of Records as being the Youngest Artist to Hold Solo Visual Art Exhibition with more than 60 pieces of his work displayed at Living Essenze Gallery in Burma Road here.
Law said Delwin had also received offers to display his art at several galleries.