Welcome to my portfolio.
I do commissions and also follow my muse in creating works which I'm passionate about.
Please visit my blog to view upcoming shows, published books, and links to art merchandise and clothing.
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For me, art began as a healing tool from illness but grew into a passion and a career. I want to spread hope and optimism through these pieces, drawing from the depths of suffering transformed into a new entity, a rebirth.
The Raw Edge refers to my abstract work. Recently, I've moved toward more abstract work including acrylics, oils and oil stains. I experiment with mark-making, alla prima brushwork and a subconscious approach without deliberation or preconception. I develop my works with impasto and palette knives. They exude spontaneity, a sense of playfulness, joy, movement, freedom, light, and the embodiment of pure artistic voice unencumbered by the need for the representational or literal but instead a direct conduit to my creative psyche. Gazing upon the original paintings, one may relate to the painting more subjectively and lose oneself within. Through meditation and relaxed observation over a period of time, the viewer may connect with the work. I am influenced by Jean Paul Riopelle and the French Canadian abstract painters of his time, the New York abstract expressionists, nature, music and the self.
My cityscapes are about anonymity, isolation and memory. My father was an architect who taught me aspects of design and perspective. In my house portraits, I have painted commissions of homes in Vancouver and Ontario. Homes provide us with comfort and belonging but may also separate us from engagement. We build silos between our private selves and our public identities. I am drawn to older homes built in the 1950-60s which are slowly being replaced by newer types of residences. They are part of the fabric of East Vancouver. I use the phrase 'disappearing city' as Vancouver goes through changes toward higher density and more contemporary architecture.
I dabble in landscape and also have a fascination for florals. I respond to the curvaceous forms and the vibrant colours of the blossoms which are a delight to paint. I like to depict the imperfect, the subtle variations of tone, and the cycle of life of the blooms, capturing their essence before they fade away. I'm influenced by Georgia O'Keeffe, Claude Monet and many others.
Sandra Yuen's focus is painting. Illuminated by fresh colours, her paintings are inspiring. She has worked as an artist for over 15 years in Vancouver, BC, Canada. She received a Fine Arts Diploma from Langara College and Bachelor of Arts in art history from the University of British Columbia.
Sandra is the author of a memoir My Schizophrenic Life: The Road to Recovery from Mental Illness, a humorous novel Chop Shtick, and a collection of novellas From New York to Vancouver: Stories on the Fly with New York writer, James D. Young. Her pen name is Sandra Yuen MacKay.
She is also a speaker on recovery and the recipient of the Courage to Come Back Award and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal. Her artwork is in public and private collections in North America. In the last few years, she's developed her skills as a drummer in a duo band Beautiful Losers with Ilir Xhediku.
Sandra's artwork has been exhibited at Thieu Art Gallery, Federation Gallery, Vancouver Fine Art Gallery, Art in the Garden, Fragrant Wood Gallery, Silk Purse (West Vancouver), Port Moody Arts Centre, CityScape Community Art Space (North Vancouver), Place Des Arts (Coquitlam), Eastside Culture Crawl, Federal Courts, Sheraton Wall Centre, Havana Gallery, University Women's Club of Vancouver (Hycroft), Vancouver Outsider Arts Festival, Gallery Gachet, Vancouver General Hospital, The Gathering Place, the Jewish Community Centre, and other venues.