LONDON.- Liu Dahong's resplendent new exhibition, his first solo show outside of Asia, shows a body of work completed mainly over the past two years, united by the themes of childhood, rebellion, memory, and myth-making: each piece paying homage to the act of troublemaking and its youthful essence.
In his brightly coloured and densely peopled scenes, reminiscent of Bruegel and Bosch, the artist conjures up individual and everyday scenes of mischief against a background of sweeping historical change, while blending juvenile humour with political satire, to both comic and provocative effect.
Dahong explores the themes of childhood, rebellion, social revolution, and national memories and myths. His works, described by Chang Tsong-Zung of Hanart TZ, as Childhood Anecdotes, are basically memorabilia from an age of troublemaking. Amidst the tumultuous scenes, small details take the eye, disturbing the balance between naivety and the course of history represented in his work, thereby inserting a disquieting shimmer of dark humour.
For me, childhood is the standard of everything beautiful, the yard stick. Childhood is eternal, may the ideals of childhood reign forever!
Born in Qingdao, Shandong, China in 1962, Liu Dahong studied under Zao Wouki before graduating from the China Academy of Art in 1985. Since then he has exhibited widely on the international stage, with a number of solo shows from 1992, as well as group exhibitions. Dahong now currently lives, works, and teaches in Shanghai.