May Ling, Artist Painter
May Ling Yong was born February 3 1946 in Vienna, Austria to a German mother and Chinese father, both circus acrobats. At the time of her birth, in the middle of the Second World War, her parents had fled Nazi Germany, a journey that would lead them all over Europe and the Middle East. May Ling started performing with the family as a child singer and acrobat from very early on until the age of twelve.
At the age of 9, her father recognized her talent for drawing and painting and started painting with her. It would become her lifelong passion. In 1958, the family settled in Beirut, Lebanon and started the first Chinese Restaurant in the Middle East. After studying dressmaking and designing, May Ling went on to study painting at the `Académie Libanaise des Beaux Arts` and afterwards at the private `Guvder Art School `.
She is a great admirer of both classical painters such as Botticelli as well as Dali, Picasso and Toulouse Lautrec, but has a preference for the Expressionist period, which greatly influences and inspires a lot of her works. Her multi-cultural back ground and surroundings and her life experiences –good and bad- have made her a very versatile and multi-talented painter. Her very personal and expressive works encompass multiple styles and periods over the years from very classical to cubism and expressionism.
Her favourite themes are the human face and body, hence the many portraits and nudes, but she also painted stills and many abstracts. May Ling has a special interest in religious themes and figures. She was once contracted to restore all the paint of the statues of saints in the Saint Francis of Assisi Church in Hamra Street, Beirut.
Some of the originals have been damaged during the civil war in Lebanon, one had to be repaired from a bullet hole and others were damaged in a fire. The remaining collection has been brought over to Europe since then.
May Ling is very happy to share her works with you on Fine Arts America and hopes you will enjoy them.