“I challenge the viewer to determine what each image means. What I think it means it is just one of endless possibilities.”

b.1982, Jianyang, Sichuan. Lives and works in Beijing.

Li Bo’s work reflects on what web surfing is doing to our perceptions and values. “All of my images are appropriated from the Internet and reassembled in a systematic way,” he explains. He paints this visual flotsam with meticulous realism, resizing the images to identical heights and lining them up against a colourless background. The result for viewers is simultaneous free association and disorientation. Grouped together with no context but each other, the images seem to be part of a secret code, inviting people to spot (or imagine) the connections between them. Most of his arrays include at least one allusion to Chinese history or current events. In Three Parts Falling in Love: Hidden Concubine Rabbit (2008), for example, the policemen carrying the scarlet-clad “concubine” refer to the attempted censorship of a photograph by the Gao Brothers that was in turn based on a misinterpretation of a news photo.

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