The art world’s attention heightened on transdisciplinary artist Yiyi Wang when her two pieces, “Monument I” and “Monument II,” were sold at the Whitney Museum store. Born in Beijing, Yiyi is renowned for her unique printmaking skills and profound insights into life’s cycles, her artistry bridging the ephemeral with the eternal.
Yiyi Wang is more than an artist. Her degree in interior design from Pratt Institute laid the groundwork for her artistic journey, enabling seamless movement across various creative domains. Following her undergraduate studies, she specialized in printmaking at the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), where she deepened her technique and expression, exploring the delicate balance between transience and eternity that defines her work. From the ancient landmarks of Venice, Italy, to the contemporary architecture in Copenhagen, Denmark, her scholarly journeys have deepened her understanding of space and culture, reflections of which resonate in her works.
Early in her career, Yiyi Wang demonstrated a versatility that defies categorization. Beyond her engagement in multiple interior design projects at New Practice Studio, including notable works like Spiritea and the Chapter & Verse Hotel, her artistic journey extended beyond the confines of design studios. Her meticulous attention to detail and the ability to create spaces that resonate with cultural significance marked her professional beginnings. However, it was her transformative solo exhibition, “An End Has a Start,” and her impactful presence in group exhibits such as the “B-Side” art show that truly showcased her depth and range as an artist. By channeling her philosophical introspections into visual art, Yiyi’s works often delve into grand themes such as the infinity of the cosmos and the ephemeral nature of individual existence, thereby provoking profound contemplation and emotional engagement from her audience.
It’s in the realm of printmaking that Yiyi Wang has unveiled another facet of her prowess as a skilled artist. She employs Photopolymer Etching, a printmaking process requiring utmost precision and patience. By integrating elements of cycles and time into her works, she invites viewers to reassess our place in the cosmos and our connection with nature.
The success of “Monument I” and “Monument II” is not just a selling point. These pieces embody her tangible expression of the “indifferent nature of fate,” attempting to depict the intertwined endless waves of life and death on a timeline through infinite patterns. By using circular geometric shapes as individual elements in the patterns, these monuments signify the infinite embrace of all uncertainties and the inevitable force of fate, integrating them into the construct of individual lives. These works seek to awaken viewers, urging them to step out of the illusion of daily life and confront the cycle of life and death.
The Robert Blackburn Printmaking Workshop is a collaborative printmaking workspace committed to providing printmaking facilities of professional quality for artists and printmakers of all skill levels. It encourages the exploration, innovation, and collaboration of techniques and aesthetics, reflecting its founder Robert Blackburn’s vision of a welcoming creative environment and open spirit. The venue chosen for the sale of Yiyi’s work, the Whitney Museum of American Art, is a significant acknowledgment of her talent. As an institution dedicated to excellence in American art, the Whitney Museum exhibits the full range of twentieth-century and contemporary American art, with a special focus on living artists’ work. Now housed in a new building designed by architect Renzo Piano, located between the High Line and the Hudson River, it offers vast expanded spaces for exhibitions and programs, presenting its unparalleled collection of modern and contemporary American art.
Today, as a member of the Robert Blackburn Printmaking Workshop and the Whitney Museum, Yiyi Wang continues to push boundaries in her multidisciplinary domain, challenging the confines of traditional artistic forms. Her journey transcends personal success, exemplifying an artist’s ability to break through cultural barriers and articulate universal themes through a unique artistic language. In Yiyi’s works, audiences find resonance, a sense of life’s fragility, and glimpses of emerging hope.