Miguel Angel Payano Jr.

Miguel Angel Payano Jr.’s painting and sculpture investigates storytelling, class and the formation and socialization of identity. The artist’s visual vernacular, informed by American, Caribbean and Chinese cultures, often translates and transgresses different artistic forms. Drawing influence from his life as a cultural transient between three separate worlds, Payano’s transcultural sensibilities combine surrealist aesthetics with humor and the grotesque.


Miguel Angel Payano Jr. was born in New York City in 1980. The artist received a dual degree in Studio Art and Chinese Language from Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts in 2003, an MFA from the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing, China in 2008, and a second MFA from Hunter College in New York City in 2020, where the artist was the recipient of the S&W Scholarship. 

Exhibitions of Payano’s work have taken place at: Make Room Los Angeles in California (2021); the first edition of the Ad-Diriyah Biennial in Saudi Arabia (2021); NADA Miami in Florida (2021); Charles Moffett in New York City (2021); ART021 Shanghai Contemporary Art Fair in China (2020); the LDX Contemporary Art Center in Hong Kong, China (2013); Celestial Suitcase in New York City (2009); the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing, China (2008); and Red T Space in Beijing, China (2007). 

Payano currently lives and works in New York City and Beijing, China.