Martin Wong (USA)

Chau Chak Wing Museum at the University of Sydney

Martin Wong (1946–1999) is widely recognised for his extraordinary depictions of social, sexual and political scenographies from the United States in the 1970s, 80s, and 90s. Weaving together narratives of queer existence, marginal communities, and urban gentrification, Wong stands out as an important countercultural voice. Heavily influenced by his immediate surroundings, Wong’s practice merges the visual languages of Chinese iconography, urban poetry, graffiti, carceral aesthetics, and sign language as well as drawing inspiration from the Latin American community he became closely involved with. His work offers an important insight into a decisive period of American history, told through its changing urban landscapes and unfolding hidden desires. 

Presentation at the 24th Biennale of Sydney was made possible with generous support from Terra Foundation for American Art and the assistance of William Lim, Living Limited.