In the Featured Artist|Designer section, I highlight artists and designers that I’ve worked with personally as students or clients. The goal is to promote their work to a larger audience and to give more context to the kind of work that I do as an English language coach. Yuwei Gong was a student in my first ESL class while teaching at the Academy of Art University.
Who is Yuwei Gong?
Yuwei Gong, who uses the name Strongman in his work, is a student I remember well. Of all the students I worked with while at AAU, he is the one that best fits the classic archetype of an artistic temperament. He has a very signature style, is driven to make art above all else, and is fascinated by the bizarre and grotesque aspects of life. He does a lot of portraiture, and he invited me to sit for him a couple of times. Below is his first portrait of me, and the featured image for this post is a self-portrait by the artist.
This is the bio that Yuwei shared about himself:
“Yuwei Gong is an Beijing Based illustration and sculptor. He mainly works in the field of illustration, comic and sculpture. He also very interested in collect all different style vintage toys, movie and comic. His collection inspired his art a lot.”
Selections of Yuwei’s work
What I love most about Yuwei’s work is that he captures his subjects in a way that makes them recognizable, but still clearly in his style. His work may seem strange or even disturbing to some, but I think this contrast between attraction and repulsion is what he likes. He has been influenced by the work of artists like Francis Bacon and cartoonist Robert Crumb, and I think you can see the evidence in his work. The dark outline he often uses shows the impact of comics on his work as well.
To see more of Yuwei’s work, you can find him on social media:
How did I help?
Yuwei writes: “I have known Ms. Jessica Gardener since 2012. She is my first teacher who taught my ESL class at Art Academy of University at San Francisco. Jessica was not just only very good at teaching English to the beginner vividly. She also very passionate to introduce the local contemporary art scene to our international art students. During the weekend, she constantly organized my class to visit the Modern Art Museum, and discussed about the artwork with us. Ms. Gardener has also helped me to resolve many problems of my own life. Without her help, I could not imagine how hard my first time overseas school life will be. I feel very lucky to be her student and friend.”
I want to help you too!
If you are looking for a coach that is passionate about helping you solve problems and is good at working with beginner-level English students, I’m happy to work with you too! If you want to know more about working with an English language coach, you can take a look at the Learn page or schedule a free trial lesson so we can talk about what you need and how I can help!