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Meet Jee-Shaun Wang

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jee-Shaun Wang.

Every artist has a unique story. Can you briefly walk us through yours?
My parents came from Taiwan to shake things up in the states. They weren’t crazy rich Asians, but they were mad talented. Dad played piano and sang like Humperdink. Mom sang and stomped like Madonna. Great team, at least up until they divorced.

Growing up, my sister always was a huge influence for me. She is an amazing artist and continues to inspire me. On any given day she can be found on the steppes of Mongolia or busking in Brooklyn. She goes by Frog Diva Wing- you decide.

In 2014, I went to Italy. Michelangelo’s work was good in pictures, but it was goddamn great in person. I almost cried because of it. Almost. Also, how could a place look so beautiful, stone buildings soaring effortlessly into the sky? I was sold, their city looked better than mine. Their city brought all the boys to the yard.

I spent a few years in Baltimore at art school, eating pizza. Shortly after graduating I wanted to be in a bigger community and looked to Los Angeles with its burgeoning art scene. I came in 2013 and found not just artists but a wide range of designers, artisans, craftsmen, and women who were all doing unique work and pushing the envelope. The Italy trip left me scarred, and I found an apprenticeship with a stone carver in 2015. That being said, I never stopped drawing and painting.

Please tell us about your art.
I make paintings and drawings in gouache and ink. It’s always a battle to create an arresting image with chaos and moments of reprieve.

As I am fascinated with religious symbolism, I try to inject those potent visual forms into my work. Most of us see symbols and make a connection automatically, subconsciously. But it’s not just religious works that are interesting to me, popular brands, teams & the local plumber all use logos and visual cues to communicate style, beliefs, and morals. I hope viewers can take a moment when looking at my work to make their own connections and possibly catch some of the details I’ve planted.

Inspiration comes to me in the form of noodles and ice cream. I prefer to eat an obscene amount of food before I work on a drawing or painting. I like Albrecht Durer and Tadanori Yokoo. Toshio Saeki and old gouache Indian paintings. Botany and architecture also inform many of my creative decisions.

We often hear from artists that being an artist can be lonely. Any advice for those looking to connect with other artists?
Yes, sometimes it can be lonely. Sometimes I’m lonely all the time. If you are feeling lonely there are many solutions- for example: go hang out with someone. Just remember to balance your shit- maybe you work better alone? In which case I guess something’s gotta give and you’re just going to have to suck it up and be lonely for a while. In bigger cities like Los Angeles finding kindred spirits is easy but you gotta be willing to take the first step out and find them.

How or where can people see your work? How can people support your work?
Instagram! Also, my website will know what’s up.

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