Police car with pigeons, 1993
Oil on canvas, signed, located New York, titled and dated on the back
25 x 20 cm 9 7/8 x 7 7/8 in.
A certificate of authenticity written by Mr Christophe Comentale will be given to the buyer.
Christophe Comentale, Cent ans d'art chinois. Edition La Différence, Ljubljana, Slovenia, April 2010. Reproduced on p.338
Private collection, Paris. Acquired directly from the artist around 1993-1994.
In this painting, Liu Xiaodong shows another facet of his talent. This oil painting, painted in America during his New York period, shows the density of life that emanates from even a sordid reality, as Christophe Comentale says. "The pigeons clumped between the edge of the sidewalk and the bottom of the gutter in search of crumbs, almost blend into the urban greyness, on which stands out the continuous line of the parking ban and the police car that fills the lower right corner with its particular color. Liu Xiaodong paints the reverse side of the model of perfection that China wants to show. He depicts the marginalized, the excluded, accentuating all that is pitiful, monstrous, irretrievable about them. It makes visible that entire groups within the country live in complete opposition to the new social norms to which the middle and upper classes aspire.
Born in 1963 in the city of Jinzhou (Liaoning province), from 1984 to 1988 he was a student at the No. 3 oil painting workshop of the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing. Since 1995, he teaches in the art school of this academy. He has won various prizes for his figures and especially his nudes. His works have been exhibited in China, the rest of Asia, the United States and Europe. His most recent solo exhibition was at the Giorgio Cini Foundation in Venice in 2015.
Liu Xiaodong is considered one of the central figures of the "New Generation" of contemporary Chinese Realism, and according to a related terminology as one of the Chinese Neorealist painters.
In the book "One Hundred Years of Chinese Art", Christophe Comentale, its author, describes the artist's work as an observation of the people around him from different social backgrounds. He is influenced by Soviet realism as shown in the works of the 1980s: large compositions of crowds with characters with passive looks and frozen attitudes. At the same time, he painted many self-portraits as well as family portraits.