List of Famous Pyrography Artists & Wood Burning Artists 2021 [Updated]
Pyrography, or wood burning, is the traditional art of burning images onto wood or leather. Wood burning involves using a special pyrography machine and heated pen with interchangeable pen tips to shade simple designs or intricate portraits onto a natural surface.
Although pyrography is viewed today as mostly a fun hobby, it can be a serious artistic medium. The following are some of the most celebrated wood burning artists from around the world who use heat and natural materials to create masterpieces.
1) Dumitru “Dino” Muradian
(1953, Romania/United States)
Dumitru “Dino” Muradian is a Romanian pyrography artist who currently lives in the United States. Muradian possesses a large portfolio of pyrography works for high-profile clients. One such client is the Romanian Orthodox Church, which commissioned from Muradian a pyrography panel of the Last Supper.
Dumitru Muradian, while most well-known for his religious work, has also created pyrography art depicting portraits, animals, and landscapes. Several wood instruments have been Muradian’s canvases as well. These wood burned instruments and other examples of Muradian’s work can be viewed here.
2) Robert McGehee
Robert McGehee is an American pyrographer, painter, and bead worker. His artwork in all mediums depicts symbols and designs of Native American, African, and Pacific Islander cultures. McGehee’s wood burned works are extremely detailed, geometrical, and symmetrical in nature and pay homage to civilizations both ancient and modern.
Robert McGehee’s pyrography art is well-respected in art circles. It has been shown at events such as the Santa Fe Classic art competition.
3) Ken Li
Ken Li is a Chinese pyrography artist and English translator. Li was a college student during the Chinese Cultural Revolution and the events that occurred during this time period inspire his work.
Li examines the cultural and ethnic diversity of China through one of his most famous series of wood burning works. The images included in this series are portraits of women from different ethnic groups in their traditional dress. Manchurian, Dong, Yao, and many other groups are depicted as part of this collection.
4) Selahattin Olceroglu
Selahattin Olceroglu is a designer and interior architect from Turkey, who uses his country’s artistic traditions to inform his own work. Olceroglu began wood burning in the 1950s and by age 19 had perfected the technique of medium wood burning. This means that his work relies on soft shading that is not too light and not too dark.
He is the the first Turkish pyrography artist to make artworks in all medium tones, which give his pieces a soft, romantic, and timeless essence.
5) Djibril N’Doye
Djibril N’Doye is a pyrography artist from Senegal who works almost exclusively on birch wood. His images depict the everyday lives of Senegalese people and villages.
N’Doye critiques modernization through his wood burnings of men and women performing traditional tasks. His work is a celebration of his home country and a connection to Senegal even while living and showing his art in the United States.