Shortening the Gap with Pei Wen Wu

Pei Wen Wu is a 20-year old artist based in China. His work is heavily influenced by the greats of contemporary art. He has a very loose, messy style that he is trying to tweak and use to his advantage in creating a style of his own. He takes his work very seriously and strives to “shorten the gap between himself and the masters of contemporary art.” View a gallery of Pei Wen Wu’s artwork below, and be sure to read our interview with him that follows.

Click on any of the above images to open a gallery of Pei Wen Wu’s artwork.
Who are your biggest influences?

The works of the masters have had the greatest impact on me. When I was a child, I liked to read the albums of Van Gogh, Munch, Picasso and Modigliani. After having a computer at home, I watched the works of contemporary masters online. From 2012 to 2015, I was really liked Meese, Basquiat, [and] Guston. I learned good feelings and ways of expression from them. But in recent years, I have tried to stay away from Basquiat because I want to make my work more unique and contemporary. When I didn’t paint, my dad and I studied the works in New York’s big galleries, such as the Anton Kern Gallery, the Gagosian Gallery, and the Gladstone Gallery. I wanted to know their artistic concept, expression method, art language, etc. For example, a simple work [can have a] rich feeling – how did he do it?

Why do you make art?

I started to think that I would like it. Now I slowly feel that it was fate, because my grades in school aren’t good. I can’t go to college and find a job. I don’t like [school]. So I chose to paint. Later I discovered that it was more difficult to succeed [in life] by just painting. However, I had no other choice. Therefore, I must constantly improve my level of painting and strive to shorten the gap between myself and the masters of contemporary art.

What do you use to make your artwork?

The media I use is mainly canvases, cardboard, and acrylics. I paint my favorite cartoon images. I look for these images in my head and then paint them. So these images are not the same as cartoon movies, they are my own version.

How does art influence your life?

At the beginning, apart from painting, I still have a lot of time to do other things. Now I mainly draw and sleep. After finishing a work, I have one night to look at the computer. I mainly look at the works of contemporary masters and collect cartoon images. I am like a middle school student who wants to take a university entrance. Painting is my life.

What goals do you have for yourself as an artist?

I don’t have the ability to accept other industries right now. I hope to work with a big gallery in the future to be a successful contemporary artist.

Follow Pei Wen Wu on Twitter.

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