My artwork sometimes takes a critical view of social, political, cultural and personal issues. However, sometimes, there is no significant meaning at all – the works are to just be light-hearted and comical in a fictitious manner. My aim is usually just to see people smile in a clever way.
Using discarded materials such as cardboard picked-up from the street and junk-mail/magazines; my work is a way that I can recycle and be environmentally responsible. The way I produce my work is also very cost effective, as I do not spend a lot on the supplies necessary to finish the work.
The real value of my work comes from its uniqueness and complexity. It take hours of cutting and pasting, layering for dimension, and colorization of my work through meticulous collage. You can often find a variety of symbolism in the detail of the collage.
The positive feedback I have received thus far has inspired me in continuing to refine the techniques used to create my style. I envision moving into other materials such as wood and plastic.
From the words by art critic Jim Magner, for the “Art and the City” column of the Hillrag in Washington, DC. April 2008.
“Jason Yen gives you a start, the first chapter, then you can be off recounting your own adventure.
He uses a collection of techniques to make the picture come alive. The flatness of design is optically challenged by adding layers of cardboard or other materials to some figures in the composition. The layers produce shadows and highlights, and the story evolves as light sources change. Complex color patterns and unexpected cultural images are added by cutting and pasting snippets from magazines. A wax marker is used to suggest the location and background elements. The end result remains cool and uncluttered, but it connects – catches your curiosity.
Jason describes his work as evolving...that he is constantly looking for ways to make it better. But as technique is vacant without ideas, I suspect he will always stalk the perimeter of the mainstream – the expected – tasting, and at times, consuming thoughts that wander away from the pack."