Piedmont woman heads mobile art truck

GREENSBORO, N.C. -- She came to the United States as an exchange student thinking she would pursue a career in a familiar field.

But something unexpected happened when Lu Xu signed up for an art class.

Not only did people like her work -- the response was so overwhelming that it inspired her to pursue a new career path.

“It was the first time I felt like I found myself,” Xu said.

She’s the curator for the University of North Carolina at Greensboro’s mobile art gallery.

It’s a moving truck that has been transformed into a gallery that travels around UNCG’s campus and Greensboro.

“I was very honored and excited to take on this role of being the first art truck lady,” she said.

Xu is also the curator for the art department’s gallery.

While she has comfortably found her place in art, there were challenges to overcome along the way.

Xu began college in Beijing before transferring to a school in South Dakota as an accounting major.

She knew some English, but was not fluent in the language.

“I had to learn so much by being in the states,” she said.

While attending school at Northern State University, she decided to change her major.

She wrote her parents a 20-page letter knowing they would be shocked.

“They are very typical Asian parents where they expect their kids to be successful, have a good paying job and a stable life, but what they heard was totally different from anything they had imagined in the picture,” Xu said.

It was scary at times, but Xu says it was the right fit.

“I feel so happy that I trusted my inner voice -- that I believed that and actually pursued it,” Xu said. “Trust your inner voice and take the risk. Everything else will come along."

Xu hopes to travel the world and explore different cultures.

She’s also thinking about at some point opening an art space in China.