Yan Pei-Ming (Chinese, b.1960) is a painter most known for his epic-sized portraits of Mao Zedong, finished with large expressive brushstrokes and sparse use of color. Born in Shanghai during the Chinese Cultural Revolution, Yan took up painting as a hobby, later applying to the Shanghai Art and Design School, where he was rejected because of a speech impediment. Yan moved to France at the age of 20, and shortly thereafter enrolled in the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris. After graduating in 1999, Yan’s achieved rapid notoriety for his massive portraits of celebrities, including Rupert Murdoch, Bruce Lee, and the artist Maurizio Cattelan. Yan’s work was included in the 2003 Venice Biennale, where his work gained an international audience, foreshadowing the recent acquisition of his work by the Louvre in 2009.

Timeline

1960
Born in Shanghai, China
1981–1986
École Nationale des Beaux-Arts, Dijon
1988–1989
Institut des Hautes Études en Arts Plastiques, Paris
1993–1994
Académie de France à Rome - Villa Médici, Rome (artist in residence)

Exhibitions

2010
Destinies, Carlson Gallery, London
2010
C’est la Vie! Vanités de Caravage à Damien Hirst, Musée Maillol, Paris [catalogue]
2010
Expo 2010 Shanghai China - Better City, Better Life, French Pavilion, Expo 2010, Shanghai
2010
Hope, une exposition d’art contemporain sur l’espoir, Palais des Arts et du Festival, Dinard, France [catalogue]
2010
Portrait de l’artiste en motocycliste, Musée des Beaux-Arts, La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland
2009
Collision: Experimental Cases of Contemporary Chinese Art, Redstar Gallery, Beijing [catalogue]
2009
Liberty, Equality, Fraternity, Huarte Contemporary Art Center, Huarte-Navarra, Spain [catalogue]
2009
The Funerals of Monna Lisa, Gallery One, Emirates Palace, Abu Dhabi Art
2009
Landscape of Childhood, Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing [catalogue published in 2010]
2009
Sweet Dream, Les Ecuries Saint-Hugues, Cluny, France
2009
Yan Pei-Ming: Les Funérailles de Monna Lisa, Musée du Louvre, Paris [catalogue]
2009
Yes! Yan Pei-Ming, Walter and McBean Galleries, San Francisco Art Institute
2008
Group Show, Art Statements Gallery, Hong Kong, SAR
2007
Painters as Printmakers, Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhtu, Christchurch
2007
Chinese Contemporary Art, La lunga marcia dell'avanguardia, Villa Croce Museo d'Arte Contemporanea, Genoa
2007
Yan Pei-Ming, Gu Dexin, Yang Jiechang, Red Mansion Foundation, London (England)
2006
"La Force de l'Art: Superd�fense," Galeries nationales du Grand Palais, Paris
2006
"Faucheur, Gou�ry, Lucariello, Yan Pei-Ming, Pensato: Les B�atitudes bestiales," Galerie Domi Nostrae, Lyon
2006
"Full House: Gesichter einer Sammlung," St�dtische Kunsthalle Mannheim, Mannheim
2006
"Yan Pei-Ming," Mus�e d'Art moderne de Saint-Etienne
2005
"Superstars: Das Prinzip Prominenz. Von Warhol bis Madonna," Kunsthalle Wien (Halle 1, Halle 2), Vienna
2005
"War is Over: 1945-2005, la libert� dell'arte da Picasso a Warhol a Cattelan," Galleria d'Arte Moderna e Contemporanea di Bergamo
2005
"Burkhard, diCorcia, M�nnikk�, Ming, Westphalen, Maxwell, McEwen, Ramos," Galerie Rodolphe Janssen, Brussels
2005
"Mahjong: Chinesische Gegenwartskunst," Kunstmuseum Bern, Bern
2005
"Oil Painting by Yan Pei-Ming," The Guangdong Museum of Art, Guangzhou, Guangdong
2005
"La Beaut� de l�Enfer," Galerie Rodolphe Janssen, Brussels
2004
"� l�Ouest du Sud de l�Est/� l�Est du Sud de l�Ouest," Villa Arson Nice, Nice
2004
"Mise a Mort: Yan Pei Ming," Galerie Rodolphe Janssen, Brussels
2004
"Dessins et des autres," Galerie Anne de Villepoix, Paris
2004
"Yan Pei-Ming: The Way of the Dragon," St�dtische Kunsthalle Mannheim; Galerie Anne de Villepoix, Paris
2003
"Synopsis 3 Testimonies: Between Fiction and Reality," National Museum of Contemporary Art, Athens
2003
"Dreams and Conflicts:The Dictatorship of the Viewer," La Biennale di Venezia, Venice
2002
"International Landscape," Galerie Rodolphe Janssen, Brussels
2002
"Busan Biennale 2002," The Busan Biennale, Busan
2002
"Looking at Painting," Galerie Tanit, Munich
2002
"Lila, wei� und andere Farben: A Summer Group Show," Galerie Max Hetzler, Berlin
2002
"Yan Pei Ming," Bernier/Eliades Gallery, Athens
2002
"Spring Group Exhibition," Art Beatus, Vancouver, British Columbia
2001
"Chinese Vermilion: In Memory of Mao," Galerie Max Hetzler, Berlin, Germany (solo)
2001
"Regards crois�s," Mus�e d'art contemporain de Montr�al, Quebec
2001
"Victimes," Galerie Art & public, Geneva, Swiss (solo)
2000
"Selfscape: Kim Sooja & Yan Pei-Ming," Kunsthalle Brandts Klaedefabrik, Odense, Denmark (solo)
2000
"Oncle aveugle et homme invisible," FIAC, Galerie Rodolphe Janssen, Paris, France (solo)
2000
"Tete de vertu," Studio Massimo de Carlo, Milan, Italy (solo)
2000
"Autoportraits," Faggionato Fine Arts, London, England (solo)
2000
"5e Biennale de Lyon: Partage d'exotismes," La biennale d'art contemporain de Lyon
2000
"Continental Shift," Ludwig Forum f�r Internationale Kunst, Aachen
1999
"Invisible Bouddha," Galerie Rodolphe Janssen, Brussels, Belgium (solo)
1999
"Retour sur lieau du crime: Portrait de famille," Galerie Bernier/Eliades, Athens (solo)
1999
"Vuln�rables�" Galerie Liliane & Michel Durand-Dessert, Paris (solo)
1999
"Figuration," Museo d�arte moderna e contemporanea, Bozen; Ursula Blickle Stiftung, Kraichtal-Unter�wisheim
1999
"Le retable, �loge des m�tissages," Panth�on Paris, France (solo)
1998
"Portraits: Yan Pei-Ming & Seydou Keita," Galerie Jule Kewenig (solo)
1998
"Weather Everything," Galerie f�r Zeitgen�ssische Kunst Leipzig
1998
"Ausstellungen 1998/99," Kewenig Galerie, Cologne
1998
"Visible Man, Invisible Man," Galerie Art & Public, Gen�ve (solo)