Stella Zee

Stella Zee was born in Shanghai, China. As a young child, her family moved to HongKong. It was during these formative years that her grandfather, a renowned calligrapher in China, recognized her intuitive talent and encouraged her to practice. She filled pages of calligraphy, establishing a style that was expressive and concise.
Thereafter, her father, pursuing a business opportunity, moved the family to Sao Paulo, Brazil. Stella not only adapted to the exotic culture and language, she ingested the flair, enthusiasm, and vivid warm light of her new country. The Brazilian exuberant love of color and rhythm informed her already highly developed sense of line in her calligraphy. This synthesis would play out repeatedly in her mature works.
The next key in her development would come when she came to college and graduate school in the U.S. After Boston College, she attended the School of the Art institute and earned an M.F.A. in Painting. Under the guidance of SAIC teachers, she found in the medium of oil painting a means to integrate the cultural influences that had informed her life. In 1982, heralding her work, Richard Loving chose her to be included in an Art Institute Show in the Morton Wing. Stella has shown extensively in Chicago and has taught at the Art Institute and the Evanston Art Center. She lives and works in Chicago.