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  • Literature

    Liu Rentao’s caricatures resemble those of Otto Dix and George Grosz. In fact, his style is a kind of Chinese verisme, and deploys exaggeration and distortion as rhetoric in a social j’accuse. Workers and peasants are the losers in the economic reforms initiated by Deng Xiaoping—the very workers and peasants Mao once declared to be the pillars of the Communist Party, and thus Chinese society. The days of the “heroes of the people” are over. Because the supply of labor is excessive, workers are mercilessly exploited today. They have to work much longer than the law allows for a pittance, they can be laid off at any time, and are not protected by unions or social security. They are victims of the boom.

    - B. Fibicher, Mahjong: Contemporary Chinese Art from the Sigg Collection, Ostfildern, 2004, p. 206.

112

Butterfly Dream

1997
Oil on canvas.
53 1/8 x 35 1/4 in. (134.9 x 89.5 cm).
Signed and dated "1997.7 Liu Rentao [in Chinese]" lower right.

Estimate
£8,000 - 12,000 

Sold for £9,600

Contemporary Art

22 June 2007, 4pm & 5pm
London