Jesse Yu aka J★RYU, is a west coast-based sculptor/artist focused on exploring the themes of life and death in his signature ghostly and eerie Forest of Sorrows narrative. J★RYU has garnered an avid following of fans who eagerly look forward to seeing how each subsequent new piece adds to the ongoing story of the ghost girl who haunts his works.
After various stints in the corporate world, Jesse needed an outlet for his creative side to help counterbalance the rigors of business. As a toy collector and enthusiast for all of his life, it was a natural step to start creating pieces and collectibles for the designer toy scene. Influenced by inspirations such as Hayao Miyazaki, Tim Burton, Ray Harryhausen, baroque design and architecture, his work was welcomed for its gothic nature and the encapsulated stories he imbued into each piece. After participating in a multitude of shows across the country and world, J★RYU was honored in 2012 as the Toy Customizer of the Year by the Designer Toy Awards.
As a member of the world famous Army of Snipers art collective, J★RYU travels the globe alongside his crewmates to bring their unique visions of art to people of all cultures. In 2011, they raised money and were filmed for a documentary called “Paint Life”, where they traveled to the Thai/Burma border to help disadvantaged children, displaced by the political strife in that region, by conducting programs where art was the universal language.
In his career, J★RYU has worked on projects for clients such as TOPPS and Hasbro and has sculpted collectibles for artists Angry Woebots, Dez Einwell, and Jermaine Rogers. His dream would be to have Studio Ghibli animate his Forest of Sorrows story.