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Win Ng (April 13, 1936 - September 6, 1991) was a Chinese-American sculptor, industrial designer and illustrator. He is best known as the co-founder of the groundbreaking San Francisco based handmades department store Taylor & Ng.


Early life

Ng was born in Chinatown, San Francisco.[1] He studied at Saint Mary's Academy and the City College of San Francisco and San Francisco State University. After serving in the United States Army he studied at the San Francisco Art Institute receiving a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in 1959. He began the Masters of Fine Arts program at Mills College in 1960 but did not complete the program.[2]

His early career as a ceramicist focused on abstract work influenced by Peter Voulkos and resulted in a one man show in 1958 at the Michow Gallery in New York City. By the 1970s Ng had seven one-man shows to his credit in Paris, New York, Portland, Oregon and San Francisco.[3]

Ng was openly gay.[4]

Taylor & Ng

In 1965 Ng met artist Spaulding Taylor and shifted his focus toward utilitarian work. The two founded Environmental Ceramics (the precursor to Taylor & Ng) and moved into creating handmade artware and homewares. Through their department store the two artists not only created a signature style still in demand by collectors, but helped to popularize Asian culture and cuisine. Ng created pottery, book designs and linens for the department store for over 20 years. The department store closed in 1985.[2]

Book illustration

Ng created illustrations for a number of books by Yerba Buena Press throughout the 1970s. These included collaborations with authors Violet and Charles Schafer. Ng also illustrated publications by Taylor & Ng.

Death and legacy

Ng died on September 6, 1991 from AIDS related complications. He was 55.[5]

A 100 by 16 foot mural by Ng graces the concourse level of the Orinda BART station in Contra Costa County, California.[6]

His artwork is in the collections of the Smithsonian, the National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo, Victoria & Albert Museum, Museum of Contemporary Crafts, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the De Young Museum.

In April 2005 the Chinese Historical Society of America in collaboration with the Queer Cultural Center held a retrospective of Ng's work under the title of "The Art of Win Ng" as part of the National Queer Arts Festival 2005.[7]

Ng's is represented posthumously by the Braunstein/Quay Gallery in San Francisco.


  1. ^ Wokcraft by Charles and Violet Schafer. San Francisco: Yerba Buena Press, 1972. page iii.
  2. ^ a b
  3. ^ Herbcraft by Violet Schafer. San Francisco: Yerba Buena Press, 1971. page 88.
  4. ^ Hallmark, Kara Kelley (2007), Encyclopedia of Asian American Artists, Greenwood Publishing Group, p. 147–9, ISBN 031333451X  
  5. ^ San Francisco Chronicle, June 10, 1991
  6. ^
  7. ^ "The Art of Win Ng: A Retrospective". Queer Cultural Center. 2005.  


  • Dim Sum: The Delicious Secrets of Home-Cooked Chinese Tea Lunch by Rhoda Yee. San Francisco: Taylor & Ng, 1977.
  • Coffee: A Connoisseur's View of Coffee by Charles and Violet Schafer, illustrated by Win Ng. Yerba Buena Press, 1976.
  • Ricecraft: A Gathering of Rice Cookery, Culture & Customs by Margaret Gin, illustrated by Win Ng. Yerba Buena Press, 1975.
  • Teacraft: A Treasury of Romance, Rituals & Recipes by Charles and Violet Schafer, illustrated by Win Ng. Yerba Buena Press, 1975
  • Eggcraft: A Compendium of Folklore, Fancies & Foods by Violet Schafer, illustrated by Win Ng. Yerba Buena Press, 1973
  • PlantCraft: A Growing Compendium of Sound Indoor Gardening with Sound by Janet Cox, illustrated by Win Ng. Yerba Buena Press, 1973
  • Wokcraft: A Stirring Compendium of Chinese Cookery by Charles and Violet Schafer, illustrated by Win Ng. Yerba Buena Press, 1972
  • Herbcraft: A Compendium of Myths, Romance and Commonsense by Violet Schafer. Yerba Buena Press, 1971

External links

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