University Hall Gallery

On View Next:

Li Wang, Crossing the Century, 2017

Li Wang

Crossing the Centuries: Bridging Cultures

On view: 6.11.18-6.22.18
Public Reception: Sunday 6.17.18. from 4-6p.m.

Crossing the Centuries: Bridging Cultures presents a series of new paintings by recent UMass Boston graduate Li Wang. Having studied painting in the Art Department, he graduated in the spring of 2017. Shortly after graduating, Wang traveled to Japan with the support of a Ruth Butler Travel Scholarship, which he was awarded to study traditional Buddhist and Ukiyo-e paintings. With the generous support of the scholarship, Wang was able to directly studied murals, paintings, and prints at the Nara National Museum, the Tokyo National Museum of Art, The National Museum of Western Art Tokyo, the Kyoto National Museum, the National Museum of Art Osaka, and the Fujita Art Museum, among others. His objective was to gain a better understanding of these artworks’ imagery, techniques, and materials to help inform the series of paintings that are presented in this exhibition.

These masterfully executed paintings invent complex compositions where disparate symbols, landscapes, and figures float and collide, deliberating how contemporary, historical, and geographical narratives can combine to create a third, hybrid image. The paintings are charged with political and cultural exchange, and advance intellectual, humorous, and aesthetic considerations of Eastern and Western art.

The artist writes:

“My art is focusing on how I can make Eastern and Western, fusion art, together. I always try to find a way to use both art ideas, and style, for a new look. I was first educated in art in The People’s Republic of China, and then the United States of America. I enjoyed learning two kinds of cultures. These backgrounds influenced and built my artistic thought, outlooks, and philosophy so that it appears like two windows to pear though. I found out 14th century Japanese painting has some good ways to connect East and West, as well as the later Ukiyo-e. I want to create something new, something that hasn’t been done before.”

Li Wang has presented internationally at the Young Palace Gallery in Tai Yuan City in China, Healds Hall Gallery in West Yorkshire in Great Britain, Xin Shen Zhou Gallery in Singapore, and the Townhouse Gallery, and Contemporary Graphic art Gallery in West Virginia United State of America. His artworks have been published in Art Speaker and Manhattan Art Magazine. He was on the CLA Dean’s List at UMass Boston for three years out of his studies, and was awarded a Ruth Butler Travel Scholarship in 2017. Wang graduated from UMass Boston in spring of 2017, and has accepted placement in the MFA program at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design for the fall of 2018.

The Ruth Butler Travel Scholarship was established in honor of Ruth Butler, Professor Emerita of Art at the University of Massachusetts Boston and a distinguished scholar in the history of sculpture. While a student, Professor Butler won a Fulbright fellowship that allowed her to pursue research in France. Recognizing that her trip abroad was a life-changing event, she would like art majors at UMass Boston to have such an opportunity for contact with individuals and institutions in another country. The scholarship annually provides an art major with funding for travel outside the United States for the purpose of studying art. Preference is given to projects that promote the student’s understanding of a culture other than the student’s own. Funded projects are focused on art historical research or studio work.

Crossing the Centuries: Bridging Cultures was organized with support from UMB student, Christopher McDonald.

About the gallery: The University Hall Gallery is a center for visual arts, presenting original and traveling exhibitions for the Art Department, the campus, and the region with an aim to make exhibitions and public programming accessible. Our mission is to serve as a community forum for cultivating pluralism, fostering dialog, and enhancing educational opportunities for the enjoyment of and interaction with original works of art.

The gallery is always free and open to the public.

For more information, please email:

University Hall Gallery is located on the first floor of University Hall, in Room 1220. 
University Dr. N, Boston, MA 02125

Directions: University Hall Gallery
Public transit is highly suggested if it is available to you: RED LINE > JFK/UMass > #1 shuttle to Campus Center
By taxi or Lyft, use this link.
Parking is also available at the Bayside Lot on Mount Vernon St. off campus for $6, cash or card, from which you can take the free #3 shuttle to Campus Center.
Both shuttles run conveniently every five minutes, until 10PM.

Gallery Hours


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Monday 11 a.m. 6 p.m.
Tuesday 11 a.m. 6 p.m.
Wednesday 11 a.m. 6 p.m.
Thursday 11 a.m. 6 p.m.
Friday 11 a.m. 6 p.m.

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