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Yan Pei-Ming, 1960 | Pop Art / Portrait painter

Yan Pei-Ming / 严培明 is a Chinese-born French painter based in Dijon, France.
He is best known for his immense, and almost exclusively monochrome, portraits that draw upon Chinese cultural history and Western portraiture tradition.
Some of his most acclaimed portraits depict the figures of Mao Zedong, Bruce Lee and Barack Obama.
Alongside and against these public figures, Pei-Mings’ portraits extend to those of his father as well as himself.

At the age of 19, Yan Pei-Ming decided to move to France where he enrolled in the prestigious École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts, Dijon.
In 1986 he graduated, achieving rapid success with his expressive, portrait-dominated œuvre.
His paintings are executed with energy and imagination, consisting of expressive brushstrokes and a predominantly monochrome palette with an occasional appearance of dark red.

In 2003, he gained international recognition at the Venice Biennale. Six years later, his work was acquisitioned by the Louvre where he exhibited a collection of portraits that sought to convey his personal perspective on Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa.

  • Work
Yan Pei-Ming has become known for his "epic-sized" portraits, including works featuring Mao Zedong, Bruce Lee and his father. A red self-portrait has been installed at the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland.
  • Exhibitions
In 2009, Yan Pei-Ming had solo exhibitions at the Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing; the San Francisco Art Institute; and the Musée du Louvre.
On February 10, 2009, it was announced that The Funeral of Mona Lisa will go on display at The Louvre on February 12, 2009 until May 18, 2009 in the room next to the original Mona Lisa.
His first solo exhibition in the United States was displayed at David Zwirner in New York City, May 2007.
Group exhibitions include the Venice Biennale in 1995 and 2003; the Sevilla Biennale in 2006; the Istanbul Biennial in 2007, among others.
  • Collections
Public collections holding works by Yan Pei-Ming include:
  • the Centre Georges Pompidou; 
  • the Musée des beaux-arts de Dijon; 
  • the Honolulu Museum of Art; 
  • the National Gallery of Australia; 
  • the National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo; 
  • the Museum Ludwig; and the Shanghai Art Museum.

Nato a Shanghai, il pittore Yan Pei-Ming vive e lavora a Digione, Francia. A diciannove anni lascia la Cina per trasferirsi in Francia, dove si forma all’Ecole nationale supérieure d’Art di Digione riscuotendo rapidamente un notevole successo grazie ai suoi ritratti.
Durante la residenza a Villa Medici (1993-1994), realizza la serie di ritratti intitolata I 108 briganti, ispirata ad un classico della letteratura cinese e attualmente conservata nella collezione del Fonds National d’Art Contemporain.
La partecipazione di rilievo alla Biennale di Venezia nel 2003 lo consacra sulla scena internazionale.
Sei anni dopo, il Louvre lo accoglie per un confronto con la Gioconda, declinata nella serie di ritratti dal titolo I funerali di Monna Lisa.