John Way Asian American, 1921-2012


John Way (Wei Letang) studied art in China before immigrating to Boston, Massachusetts, in 1956, where he furthered his arts education with instruction in design at MIT. Way’s work is inspired by both classic Chinese calligraphy and Abstract Expressionist painting. His late work is characterized by brushy, bold black marks applied over a background of two or three colors. 


Throughout the 1960s Way had held many solo shows in Boston, including one in Nexus Gallery in 1960 and one in MIT's Art Museum in 1968. In 1965, his work was shown alongside acclaimed contemporary artists including Hans Hartung and Andy Warhol, in a joint exhibition Painting Without a Brush held at the Accademia del Verbano in Italy. His works are in the collections of both the Stanford University Art Museum and the San Francisco Art Museum.