Miguel Angel Payano Jr. (b. 1980, New York) is an Afro-Caribbean American artist working between Beijing and New York. With a visual vernacular that is informed by American, Caribbean, and Chinese cultures, he creates works that oscillate between painting and sculpture that investigate class, identity formation/socialization, and storytelling. His transcultural surrealist sensibilities bind aesthetics with humor and the grotesque, with his works often translating and transgressing different artistic forms.

Payano received a dual degree in Studio Art and Chinese Language from Williams College in Massachusetts in 2003 before moving to China and attending the renowned Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing, where he graduated with an MFA in 2008. In 2020, Payano received a second MFA from New York’s own Hunter College, where he was the recipient of the S&W Scholarship. Payano’s work has been shown at Make Room Los Angeles; the LDX Contemporary Art Center, Beijing; and the Central Academy of Fine Arts, Beijing, China. Miguel will participate in the first edition of Ad Diriyah Biennial– opening in Winter 2021– with a large-scale painting installation.