Art by Lan Yao

As a child, Lan spent many solitary hours forced to study math equations, the english dictionary and scales on the violin. Childhood, for her, was a life of incarceration. During those lonesome hours which seemed to have no end, Lan imagined creatures, friends, who accompanied her on the lonely path set by her parents towards becoming a child prodigy. She would draw these friends, the clothes they wore, their everyday habits, where they lived, their hopes and dreams. Through them, Lan was able to live a life full of exciting escapades, romance and ultimately touch briefly the lightness of freedom.

Now as an adult, not having achieved the status of former child genius, Lan still has her friends with her as her mind roams in a space full of wonder. Lan paints landscapes, inspired often by hikes through the coastal rainforest of Squamish, BC. Her friends, the creatures of her childhood, now live in these spaces, safe, free and always at play.

Lan Yao has a Bachelors of Fine Arts from Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design, a degree in 3D Animation and Visual Effects from Vancouver Film School and has accumulated many hours making coffees at your local coffee shop.

I am inspired by cave art, petroglyphs, pictographs and hieroglyphics. Art that tells a story and sets a path to somewhere ( petroglyphs) have always drawn my attention. Mother Nature evokes the colours I choose to use.