Liu Bolin | China

Road block no. 51, 2007

photograph (edition 8)
118 / 150 cm

From the Museum’s collection

Liu Bolin’s use of camouflage echoes the instinctive deception of certain animals merging into their background to hide from predators, or the technique used by war-going soldiers who become invisible to their enemy.

Liu Bolin himself says: ‘I don’t integrate myself into the environment, on the contrary, I feel invaded by my environment.’ Man reverts to an animal state to instinctively preserve himself from danger.

“In urban camouflages, man becomes invisible”. Liu, who considers himself a more realistic than idealistic artist, has managed to express visually a feeling of unease and passive protest.

“That series is made to contest the violence of the government action. I want to show to the world a silent resistance of a Chinese artist”, says Liu Bolin. “According to my experience of life, China’s mainstream culture and politics are not human. The individualism is not allowed. If you want to develop, you have to hide yourself first.

…For me, to hide is a strategy. To hide is a way to gather the power.”