Wong chongjian, a native of Wanping (present day Beijing) received his jinshi degree in 1643, in the last civil service examination held under the Ming dynasty. After the capital fell to the invading Manchus, he moved his family to Jiangnan. Later he became an official under the Qing, eventually becoming President of the Board of Rites. In 1661 he retired, spending the rest of his life in the famous Yiyuan, Garden of Felicity, in the southwestern part of the capital.
As a painter, Wang was talented in all genres and his works were highly sought after. He was a friend of Cui Zhizhong (circa 1595-1644) and had a good grasp of Cui's brushwork. In bird and flower compositions and figure paintings in which Wang excelled, he would apply colors in several layers to complete even the smallest details. In his sixties, Wang was still a painter of the Imperial Academy.