Sarah Weizhen Xu

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Sarah Weizhen Xu

Aged 26

The Florence Academy of Art US

Instructor(s): Jordan Sokol, Amaya Gurpide, Cornelia Hernes, Stephen Bauman

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  • Artworks

Bathing in light

Oil on Linen

21 x 17 ins (53.34 x 43.18 cms)

A Glimpse of the Model Room

Oil on Linen

24 x 19 ins (60.96 x 48.26 cms)

Venus and the Ocean

Oil on Linen

40 x 23 ins (101.6 x 58.42 cms)

Santiago With a Stick

Oil on Linen

31 x 19 ins (78.74 x 48.26 cms)


Oil on Linen

20 x 16 ins (50.8 x 40.64 cms)

A Fat Woman's Meditation

Oil on Linen

23 x 22 ins (58.42 x 55.88 cms)


Charcoal on Toned Paper

20 x 16 ins (50.8 x 40.64 cms)

The Minstrel's Eyes

Charcoal on Toned Paper

20 x 16 ins (50.8 x 40.64 cms)

Cast of a Woman's head

Oil on Linen

20 x 16 ins (50.8 x 40.64 cms)

The Pride of the First Nation

Charcoal on Toned Paper

28 x 17 ins (71.12 x 43.18 cms)

Wise old man

Charcoal on Toned Paper

23 x 22 ins (58.42 x 55.88 cms)

I don’t even remember when did I start doing art, my mother taught me drawing and painting since my hand cold hold a crayon.

However, when I finally get a chance to chase my dream as a trained artist in classical realism, I was already 24, without support from my family, and with only a little bit money in the bank, yet some how I believed I can do this.

I had two reasons for this, one is that I believe that I can some how find a way to tough out the financial situation, the other one is, I thought I was going to become a master after I graduate.

Fortunately, thanks to many people who has been supporting me over the years, and having spent two years sleeping in a broken van, I have only 2 trimesters to go before I can graduate from The Florence Academy of Art.

Unfortunately, I haven’t become a master yet, of course.

The more I learn, the more I notice how much I don’t know, and how much more I have to learn. Three years of training only offered me a glimpse of how it is like to be a real artist.

I would like to stay for at least one more trimester in FAA, so I would formally graduate in summer next year. And then, I would spend some time working as artist assistant for some other artist, I believe this would offer me some practical knowledge in how to become an independent artist in the real world, and also provide myself some financial support for setting my own studio.

Yet I would never stop doing my own art, my goal is to be an artist that could paint narrative multi-figure paintings, like Gérôme and Meissonier, the old masters I admire. As I mentioned above, artist should never stop learning, so I would take some workshops when my schedule allows, and at some point, go to a different school, or even different country to have another full time training program. In this way, I would master different techniques and styles, so I can mingle them, chose and develop the technique and style that fits me the most.

Sarah Weizhen Xu

1993 Nanchang (Jiangxi), China



Educational History


2017 - Present     The Florence Academy of Art, Three Year Certificate Program, Jersey City, NJ

2016 -  2017       Grand Central Atelier, workshops, Long Island City, NY

2015 -  2017       Syracuse University, M.S. in professional accounting, Syracuse, NY

2011 – 2015       Beijing Language and Culture University, B.A. in Economics, Beijing (China)                       

1997 – 2007       Huang Guofang Fine Art Studio, Nanchang (China)



Group shows and Selected exhibitions


2019        “Full Pallet” The Florence Academy of Art Fund-raising exhibition, New York City, NY

2019         14th International ARC Salon Competition Finalists online exhibition.

2019        “6x6x2019 The International Small Art Phenomenon” exhibition in Rochester Contemporary Art Center, Rochester, NY

2019         Salmagundi Club Drawing Competition of the Nude, open public show, New York City, NY

2018        “Anonymous Brooklyn”NYC Jewelry Week exhibition, Brooklyn Metal Work, Brooklyn, NY

2018        “Believe in Syracuse Creativity Crates” public auction, Everson Museum, Syracuse, NY

2018        “Drawing on the Masters” The Florence Academy of Art's Benefit auction, New York City, NY

2017         16th annual Westcott Art Trail, Syracuse, NY

2016        “Harding Memorial Plein Air” Finger Lakes Arts Council’s annual art show, Auburn, NY

2005        “I am the Best” Nanchang University junior artist exhibition, Nanchang (China)





2019       Junior Artists Scholarship, Salmagundi Club, New York City, NY

2019       Merit Based Work Study Scholarship, The Florence Academy of Art, Jersey City, NJ

2018       Merit Based Work Study Scholarship, The Florence Academy of Art, Jersey City, NJ

2015       Merit Based Scholarship, Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY

2013-15    Merit Based Scholarship, Beijing Language and Culture University, Beijing, (China)





2019    Finalist, 14th International ARC Salon Competition "Fully From Life" Category

2019    Winner of the March 2019 “Ink Method Contest” Online Fine Art Competition

2018    Finalist, "Believe in Syracuse Creativity Crates" Local Artist Competition

2017    Finalist, "Drawing on the Masters" The Florence Academy of Art's Benefit Auction

2016    Second Prize, "Harding Memorial Plein Air Paint Out", Finger Lakes Arts Council

2005    First Prize and Special Honor, “I am the Best” Junior Artist competition, Nanchang University, (China)



Teaching experience


2018-19  Guest Instructor of Anatomy at Life Drawing Studio Group, Fanwood, NJ

2018    “Figure Drawing from Life” Demo at Life Drawing Studio Group, Fanwood, NJ

2012     Painting instructor at Golden Wings Art Rehabilitation Service Center for Disabled Children, Beijing, (China)



Working experience


2019    Internship Artist Assistant at Carole A. Feuerman Sculpture Foundation, New York City, NY
2019    Substitute Organist for Traditional Latin Mass at St Paul the Apostle Church, Jersey City, NJ
2019    Organist Assistant at Saints John&Paul Church, Larchmont, NY

2018    Studio Assistant at Ivan Valtchev’s Fine Art Studio

2018    Life Model Figure Drawing Class Assistant at Field Colony, Hoboken, NJ

2016    Contract Illustrator for the “The Lord of the Rings, the Chinese Wiki” website, China





1999        "Fine Art Textbook for Primary School, Grade 2, First Volume" Jiangxi Fine Arts Publishing House, page 28, ISBN7-80580-459-1/J-448

1999        "Fine Art Textbook for Primary School, Grade 2, Second Volume" Jiangxi Fine Arts Publishing House, page 27, ISBN7-80580-459-2/J-459