(Chinese, b. 1963)
Color etching and aquatint
Support: Chine collé on wove paper
Platemark: 71 x 62 cm (27 15/16 x 24 7/16 in.); Sheet: 92.5 x 72.6 cm (36 7/16 x 28 9/16 in.)
Gift of Judith and James A. Saks 2005.257
Chinese-born, New York-based artist Yun-Fei Ji works in the style and format of classical Chinese landscape painting, combining it with contemporary references. Here villagers have gathered large baskets of grain, but foreboding images, such as skeletons or ghosts wearing headdresses at left, and strange hybrid creatures at right, imply imbalance in the world. The artist’s memories from his childhood in Maoist China surface in the form of a portrait of the communist leader, and a red banner, signifying communist propaganda of the Cultural Revolution (1966–1976). During that time, the government transformed the agrarian economy through wide-scale industrialization, displacing farm communities into
collectives for the production of steel.
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