Si Chen Yuan was born in Hangchow, China on April 4, 1911. Yuan began drawing and painting at a young age. He studied for several years with Péon Ju at the Central University in Nanking. During the Sino-Japanese War and WWII he worked as an artist in the cultural department for the U.S. Air Force. While in Shanghai, Yuan adopted the English name Wellington. With the Communists taking control of the country, he left China for Jamaica in 1949. The following year he moved to San Francisco to work as a cook at the Fairmont Hotel. In 1952 he settled on the Monterey Peninsula where he taught Mandarin Chinese at the Defense Language Institute at the Presidio. Several trips to Europe and Mexico were made while maintaining a home and studio in Carmel. Working in oil and watercolor, he produced still lifes, High Sierra snow scenes, European and Mexican genre, harbor and beach scenes, and seascapes. His painting style, which varied from Impressionism to Abstractionism, submitted to occidental influence. He is known to have used the pseudonym Zambini. Depressed over his broken marriage and lack of recognition for his work, Yuan put a bullet through his head on Sept. 6, 1974.
Source: Edan Hughes, "Artists in California 1786-1940"
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