Sculptor Roger Wing

About the Artist

Wing has called himself a sculptor ever since he was introduced to wood carving in 1988. His lifelong love of art connected with a material and a process that he knew could occupy the span of several lives. The experience of subtractive carving is a challenge greater and more engaging than any other. Although other mediums have expanded Wing’s knowledge of techniques and tools, and introduced him to a world wide community of artists, it is wood that still claims the greatest hold on his heart. Ice is fast but doesn’t last. Stone lasts a long time, but it requires much more time, space, tools, and expense to sculpt. But wood is just right.

Early Influences

Christopher Gonzales, a leading Jamaican sculptor, and Barrington MacLean, a Panamanian born artist and Wing’s first woodcarving instructor, were two early influences.  He began woodcarving while a student at The University of California, Santa Cruz in the 1980’s where he studied under master sculptor, Jack Zajac.  Wing visited Japan after college to study that country’s rich woodcarving heritage.  In Nara he was introduced to Koyo Taketani, a carver of traditional wooden dolls, who gave Wing his first Japanese tools.  The Japanese mallet made especially for Wing almost 30 years ago is a tool he uses daily. 

From Wood to Ice, Stone and Sand

Wing’s love of woodcarving has carried over to many other materials.  In 1994 Wing visited Bernard Matemera in the remote Zimbabwe community, Tengenenge, and got his first taste of stone carving.  In 2000 Wing was invited to carve marble in Carrara, Italy at the studio of Bay Area Figurative sculptor, Manuel Neri.  Five times Wing has carved ice at the World Ice Art Championships in Fairbanks, Alaska.  He has also been invited multiple times to carve ice in China, Finland, Poland, and Germany.  Wing has also been invited to carve sand at top international events. 

Philadelphia Freedom

Wing moved to Philadelphia in 1997 to study at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts.  In 2003 he married a Nurse Practitioner. They have two children and now live in Powelton Village.  Wing began sculpting in his studio at 40th and Westminster in West Philadelphia in 2017.