Andrew Li (b. 1962, Shanghai), is renowned for his loose, sketch drawing style that he has refined after 30 years working in the Creativity Explored studio.
Li’s artwork is credited as being accessible to many audiences because of its focus on universal themes. His most frequent subject matter is active, urban environments and all their elements (cityscapes, transportation, groups of people, pets). Typically sketching from life, Li incorporates what he observes into artwork with a precise perspective and attention to detail. Yet, there is little distinction between the form and content of Li’s work. All aspects, from ink-splattered process to finished piece, are integrated. What emerges encapsulates how the eye reads a chaotic scene; how it latches on to certain details and summarizes others, how it makes sense of all the dizzying activity encountered on a busy street.
Li’s works are sometimes personal, depicting family members, his experiences of city living in Shanghai or San Francisco, or members of the Creativity Explored studio. In recreating his personal fascinations, experiences, and memories on paper, Li invites the viewer into his busy urban life, while also providing a glimpse into his personality. The speed of urban life mirrors Li’s daily life. Not only is he an artist at Creativity Explored, but Li also attends classes at City College of San Francisco. He is deeply fascinated with the inner workings of cars, buses, trains, bicycles, human and animal movement. This affinity for movement is captured on the picture plane through a stream of consciousness style of drawing.
Li’s singular, signature art is collected by patrons in the Bay Area, the U.S. and abroad, and has even been reproduced on skateboards, t-shirts, and on the San Francisco MUNI Disability Guide. The artist’s work also has been exhibited nationally and internationally. In addition to a solo exhibit at the Jack Fischer Gallery in San Francisco, CA in 2009, Li’s artwork was included in West Coasts, Museum of La Creation Franche, Begles, France in 2014, Outsider Artists, Oakland International Airport, Oakland, CA and Outside In: The Art of Inclusion, Crawford Art Gallery, Cork, Ireland in 2013, The Museum of Everything: Exhibition #4, Selfridges, London, UK, Fresh Flowers in Boston University College of Fine Arts – Sherman Gallery, Kirksville, MO in 2011, one of these does not belong, Adobe Books Back Room Gallery, San Francisco, CA in 2008, Radiant Spaces: Private Domaine, Track 16 Gallery, Santa Monica, CA in 2004, Dialogue Project at Funabashi Cure Gallery, Funabashi Cure Gallery, Funabashi, Japan and Hello There Friend, Christine Burgin Gallery, New York, NY in 2003, Created in California, Berenberg Gallery, Boston, MA in 2000, and Bay Area Now 2, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco, CA in 1999.