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Helice Wen

Helice Wen

Meet visual artist from San Francisco, Helice Wen.

 

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

I was born and raised in Shenzhen, China. I moved to San Francisco at age 14 with my parents.

 

Describe the city you’re living in and what it’s like to live there.

I’ve been living in this little big city called San Francisco for 20 years now. I still not used to the cold summer. The view surrounding the city is very inspiring, every night I am grateful that I can call it home. The city has changed dramatically over the last decade because of the tech boom. The faces on the streets change, people come and go but the spirit of free-thinking is still here.

 

The view surrounding the city is very inspiring, every night I am grateful that I can call it home.

What is the best and worst thing about living in your city?

Beautiful nature and top-notch city life combined. Also, the location is great no matter where you travel to.

The worst part is how overly crowded the city is. Everything is so expensive and the wealth gap is getting bigger.

 

Give us 3 words that describe what it’s like to be a creative in your city.

Inspired. Anxious. Personality.

 

How did you start your career in art?

I always wanted to be an artist when I was growing up. I drew for most of my free time and went to art classes since I was a kid. Afterwards, I went to art college. Pretty much this is the only thing I do.

 

I always wanted to be an artist when I grow up. I drew for most of my free time and went to art class since I was a kid. Afterward, I went to art college. Pretty much this is the only thing I do.

Were the people around you supportive of your decision on working as a creative?

To be honest. Not so much. My immigrant family doesn’t believe that being an artist is a job. Most of the friends I grew up with went on for a much traditional career path. They always think it should just be a part-time thing. Not until the recent few years, they started to take me more seriously.

 

What are some goals and ambitions you have for your future work?

Even though I’ve shown works for 10 years, it’s only until now that I started to have more confidence and have a clearer voice about what I want to delivery through my work. I am ready to show my work to a bigger platform and connect with a bigger audience, not limited to a gallery space. My ultimate goal is to afford to do free art to everyone.

 

I am ready to show my work to a bigger platform and connect with a bigger audience, not limited to a gallery space.

If you could collaborate with any person in the world who would it be?

Big fashion house 🙂

 

How would you describe the women around you?

Women in my family are much stronger than men. They are actually the one that takes the lead in many families situations. Since we are coming from a very traditional Chinese family, usually men are still the dominant ones. I am very glad that at this time, my women family members are more open about their feelings and give me their blessing to not be afraid and to be strong.

I love my women friends. I admire every single one of them.

 

Were there any local female creatives that you looked up to when you were growing up?

I didn’t pay attention about the gender issues among creatives until recent years.

 

Are there any challenging aspects of being a female in your industry?

I truly can’t tell if some of those challenges are caused by my race, gender, or my immigrant status; maybe they all add up. I used to hide from my identity, thinking I can blend with the majority and no one will pick on me. Now I embrace my differences, what I used to be ashamed of.

 

Be passionate, be patient, be calm when you work and be loud when you want to tell your message.

Do you have any advice to young women who are aspiring to work in your field?

Be passionate, be patient, be calm when you work and be loud when you want to tell your message.

 

 

Photos courtesy of Helice Wen.

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