Stella Chang's life has been a tapestry of diverse experiences and unexpected twists. Born in San Jose, California, she spent her formative years moving between the United States, Taiwan, and Canada. Wanting to become an artist, she studied at New York University under the guidance of American painter Keith Mayerson, eventually earning her BFA in 2006.

Jobless upon graduation, Stella shelved her artistic dreams to design fashion handbags for prominent brands, garnering recognition from the fashion icon Anna Wintour in 2012. However, as life would have it, Stella experienced her first autoimmune flare-up in 2021, forcing her to quit a flourishing fashion career spanning nearly two decades.

The subsequent two years were marked by visits to specialists in search of a diagnosis, during which she rediscovered the therapeutic power of painting and used it to find solace and manage chronic pain. From watercolor to digital art, Stella crafted visual narratives that transcended trends, conveying messages of hope, fear, despair, perseverance, and the will to live.

Through it all, Stella was astounded by a profound resonance with her work shared by people who attend her exhibitions. Inspired, she decided to dedicate her life to creating visual narratives that invite audiences to examine their own paths and deal with life’s challenges.

In August 2023, Stella finally received an official diagnosis of Lupus with secondary Sjogren Syndrome. She was also discovered and signed by prestigious fine art publisher Rosenstiels of London and online retailer in the USA in the same year.

Artist Statement

I'm a multimedia artist who embraces imperfection and redefines beauty through my work, drawing inspiration from the ancient Japanese practice of Kintsugi. In 2021, my life took a dramatic turn when a massive Lupus flare-up forced me to abandon my fashion career and confront my mortality. I transitioned from a driven creative professional to a person battling chronic illness.

During this challenging period, I stumbled upon an NHK documentary about Japanese Kintsugi artisans. These skilled craftsmen mend broken ceramics with precious metals like gold, platinum, or silver, transforming flaws and damages into histories and memories treasured by their owners. This philosophy aligns with wabi-sabi, the Japanese acceptance of imperfection as part of an object's narrative.

In my own creative journey, I echo Kintsugi's spirit. I don't seek perfection in my art anymore; instead, I employ diverse mediums such as watercolor, ink, digital rendering, and 3D printing to craft narratives that transcend superficial beauty. My work is an attempt to mend and redefine what makes us human, a visual reflection of what makes us “us” - with joy, aspirations, heartaches, and sufferings.

Like Kintsugi, I create a unique beauty that arises from the acceptance of flaws, much like my personal journey of embracing imperfection and creating something beautiful out of life's cracks.