One of his highly praised works is a butterfly shaped from a piece of jadeite that gradually “changes” colors. The body is green, while the delicate wings are a pale, translucent orange with intricate details.
“This is not the traditional butterfly that you would find on jade,” Wang says. “I practiced a lot to master traditional carving skills, while at the same time I tried to forget conventional shapes.”
Wang attends many art, gemstone and jewelry exhibitions and reads widely about contemporary art.
“If you want to break all the shackles, you have to dig deeper,” he says.
He aims to fuse a contemporary flavor into the ancient stone craft.
Wang is a pioneer in creating contemporary jade works or “installations.”
His one-meter-tall work “The Unlimited Power of Buddhism” combines jade with a titanium alloy. The Buddha is made of deep green jade attached to a titanium tree-shaped structure dotted with colored beads and tiny LED screens.
“I am very interested in titanium and jade, one is a new material and the other is an ancient one. The striking contrast broadens the cultural meaning of jade,” he says.
In 2012, Wang was the first jade artist to hold a solo exhibition at the National Museum of China in Beijing. Chen Lusheng, the museum’s vice director, said, “I don’t regard Wang as a traditional jade craftsman, but an artist filled with creativity and ideas.”
In 2011, Wang cooperated with Italian jewelry designer Fulvio Maria Scavia to combine jade with European jewelry.
“I want to spread the appeal of jade to people outside China, because jade is the Chinese jewelry that merits an international stage,” the artist says.