Zhu Wei was born in 1966 in Beijing, and is famously known as a political painter drawing motifs from traditional Chinese art, juxtaposing ancient and unmistakably modern figures to offer reflections on Chinese life and society from the era of reform of the 1980s. Growing up in a military family and eventually joining up with the People's Liberation Army, the political interpretation has become intertwined with his art. Yet such an interpretation cannot encapsulate the entire essence of his work. Rather, Zhu has repeatedly emphasized the 'humanity' in his works - a common thread that runs through each and every one, of a man being caught in the vagaries of life.
While Zhu works with traditional media such as ink, he has since evolved and retrofitted them to his own use. Zhu employs the traditional Gongbi method, and incorporates them into contemporary subject matter. Beyond that, Zhu is similarly well-versed in traditional painting theories, and frequently integrates them into his work, such as the elaborate seals that are imprinted on his works.