Yugi Wang was born in China and now lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. He received classical training at the Tianjin Academy of Fine Arts and the Central Academy of Fine Arts (Beijing) in China. A self-taught artist declared a child prodigy during the cultural revolution, Wang was influenced in his early work by both the tradition of Chinese heritage and naturalism, or “communist realism” as it was called in the former Soviet Union. This seemed to be the only acceptable stylistic avenue for Wang to take until he saw Rembrandt’s work and was deeply moved by the level of human depth he was able to capture.
Wang made the life-altering decision to emigrate from China to the United States five years after the Tiananmen Square massacre. Since then, his art has widely embraced Western and European influences. Weaving his way through past art movements through the present, Wang picked up pieces of what resonated with his artistic spirit, finally arriving at his own style and means of expression: a contemporary artist staring straight on at the conditions of our time and capturing the current human spirit with sensitivity and skill.
“Art belongs to the personal religion of the painter. When an individual’s talent and wisdom are committed to a noble mission, this conviction will illuminate him. When the artist draws from individual life experience, transforming the outside through artistic production, there is the possibility of a valuable resource within the communal social wealth. The courage to face the self strengthens the capacity to create more compelling works.” ~ Yuqi Wang
Wang’s work can be found in such public collections as the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery (Washington, DC), the Harvard Art Museum (Boston), and China National Gallery, as well as in numerous private collections throughout the world. He won the Grand Prize in The Portrait Society of America’s International Portrait Competition and Second Prize in the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery’s Portrait Competition (Washington, DC).