, 1995

oil painting
H.150 X W.300cm

Yue Mingjun  (1962--     )   China

In October 2007 the news media reported that Yue Mingjun’s painting Execution had create a new record in auction, making big news in the art world.

Goya’s The Shooting of the Third of May had inspired Manet and Picasso. Now Yue appropriated it in to Execution. The painting shows two groups of people, simulating a shooting scene in front of a red wall.  The individuals are noticeably all self-portraits of the painter, with opened mouth smiles. Although the painter denied an association with the June 4th Tiananmen Event, the link seems obvious. The composition here has been reduced to a much simpler manner; Simplicity is to emphasize the Strength,as the Painter once said.

Yue has been labelled as a member of the Cynical Realists. He claims to abandon certain idealism; he appropriates the historical scene and downgrades it from a position of glory and poetry to one of that is trivial and earthy. His artistic language is certainly unique, and might well be inherited from the Seven Sages of Bamboo Grove, of third century China.


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