Breakthroughs: Interview with Fong Chung-Ray
By Olivia Wang
The 84-year-old Fong Chung-Ray was an early pioneer of contemporary Chinese art. Born in Henan province, Fong joined the army as a teenager, following them to Taiwan where he received art training at the military’s cadre college. After leaving the army, he became a key member of the Fifth Moon Group, who represented a new wave of modernism in Taiwan in the 1960s. In 1971, Fong was awarded a grant by the John D. Rockefeller III Foundation, enabling him to travel across Europe and the United States. His exposure to Western art during that time shaped his aesthetic sensibilities, leading him to his original abstract visual language that draws from both the Chinese ink tradition and modern Western art. Shortly after his stint abroad, Fong immigrated to the US, settling in the San Francisco Bay Area
where he has been based since.