Interview: YunFen Wang
Luca Curci talks with YunFen Wang during CONTEMPORARY VENICE 2021 – ITSLIQUID International Art Fair, at THE ROOM Contemporary Art Space.
YunFen Wang was born and raised in Taiwan. She received her MFA from the Academy of Art University, San Francisco with an emphasis in painting and drawing in 2021. Prior to this, her BFA was obtained at Chinese Culture University, Taiwan. She was selected as a featured artists of the Academy of Art University Spring Show in 2021. While living in Taiwan, she participated in multiple exhibitions at the Chinese Cultural University. Her installation art Memory on The Cloud was collected by National Kaohsiung University.
Luca Curci – What is art for you?
YunFen Wang – For me, art is the sublimation of observation and understanding, and it can also be said to be a kind of concern. Artists understand the world through the things around them and communicate it to the public in their familiar way. Therefore, we rarely see artists creating things that they don’t care about, because for an art work to touch people’s hearts, it must have a certain observation and understanding of what is depicted.
LC – What is your background? What is the experience that has influenced your work the most?
YW – I am a painter and graduated from the Academy of Art University, San Francisco in 2021. At the age of thirteen, I started to learn painting in a private studio under the encouragement of my father. Since then, I have always been passionate about art. My area of specialty is painting, I participated in multiple exhibitions at Academy of Art University and back in Taiwan. At the beginning of my art journey, I was just painting what I like. However, now art is becoming a language of mine, I paint not only because I like it, but also I can communicate with others through my art. During my studies, there was a teacher, Bingqi Cai, who had a deep influence on me. He is the enlightenment teacher of my art. He is very good at using inconspicuous things to create profound stories behind it. His works feel very approachable and warm. This also gave me a different understanding of art. From then on, I paid attention to the details around me to find inspiration.
LC – Where do you find your inspiration?
YW – I like to find inspiration in my daily life. For someone who is a bit introverted and shy like me, it is easy to feel embarrassed by anyone’s gaze or actions. This is why I create the Interpreting Discomfort series. Interestingly, when I shared this view with others, I realized that it was not the only problem I encountered. Everyone feels different degrees of discomfort for others’ excessive care or gaze. So I started to focus on how these uncomfortable feelings are formed, and what kind of people or things can cause this situation.
LC – How is being an artist nowadays?
YW – Being an artist today is of course much happier than before. There are many social media and platforms available. Artists have many more opportunities for everyone to see their works. This is also grateful for the efforts of previous artists to make art a part of life. It allows today’s artists to have more courage being different from the trend. However, there are also difficulties, how to find a foothold in this torrent of art will become what today’s artists need to work harder for.
LC – Did your style change over the years? In which way?
YW – Rather than changing the style, it is more like deriving more ideas in the creative process. The Interpreting Discomfort series of works were conceived in 2019. During this period of time, you can discover the differences in color and composition in the works. As I continue to create, I have covered more ideas. From the beginning, the discomfort came from the excessive concern of others. Now, this discomfort may also come from the pressure on ourselves.
LC – What do you think about the concept of this festival? How did it inspire you?
YW – The concept of this festival attracted me very much. Everyone is like a universe that constantly changes state and ideas over time. In this exhibition, each artist uses their own creations to communicate with viewer, just like two constantly changing universes are colliding, crossing time and space to connect with each other. This also makes me look forward to how my work can communicate with the audience and generate new ideas for the audience.
LC – In which way the artwork presented in our exhibition is connected with the festival’s theme?
YW – My work is about the subtle interaction between people, and this discomfort will develop into a different state due to the difference in time and place. As mentioned in the concept of this festival, because of changes in time and place to communication. I want my work to be able to reach people in different states in the exhibition, to bring out different aspects of the work.
LC – Do you think ITSLIQUID GROUP can represent an opportunity for artist?
YW – The answer is yes. I know from the website that you have been actively holding various exhibitions, covering many different topics. This is very friendly for artists, they can choose the theme that fits their own work and let the work be displayed in this beautiful space. And the frequent exhibitions in art spaces can bring more audiences and create more opportunities for artists to be seen by everyone.
LC – Did you enjoy cooperating with us?
YW – Yes, I enjoy working with you very much. I was very happy when I received the invitation, but I didn’t have much experience in overseas exhibitions. Then I received a lot of help during this period. All the staff are very enthusiastic and patient, which also reduces the tension caused by my lack of experience.
LC – What do you think about ITSLIQUID Platform?
YW – ITSLIQUID is a good platform for artists to exhibit. Seeing other artists’ explanations of their own ideas under the same theme is a very valuable experience for me to exhibit here.