Cuong Nguyen, “The Mask”, Pastel on Sanded Paper
Growing up in Vietnam after the fall of Saigon, Cuong Nguyen was accepted into Saigon’s Academy of Art while still in high school. He emigrated to the U.S. in 1991, where he earned a degree in illustration from San Jose State University and established a successful career as an icon designer in Silicon Valley.
Cuong works in both oil paints and pastels. Though he almost never blends his strokes, Cuong achieves a level of detail and smoothness of gradations that is unusual in pastel paintings This painting was done in pastel on sanded paper. In 2011, this pastel painting was selected to one of the top pastel show in New York, Pastel Society of America, and won the President Award.