(B. 1975)
World, Deadwood, Boy
signed 'Li Jikai' in Pinyin; signed in Chinese; dated '2007' (upper left); titled, signed and dated in Chinese; signed 'Li Jikai' in Pinyin; inscribed '200 cm x 148 cm.' (on the reverse)
acrylic on canvas
150 x 200 cm. (59 x 78 3/4 in.)
Painted in 2007
Ode to Art Contemporary, Singapore
Private Collection, Asia

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Lot Essay

"When I was growing up, we mainly struggle to cope with life, to accept its arrangement, to become who we are now. What I know is that we really did not seem to be the creators or participants of our own lives, but rather, a spectator, dazed, isolated from the group. Then, time passes by."
- Li Jikai

The images of daydreaming boys can be seen as a reflection of the indifference and perceived distance between individual and society as viewed by artists of the post-1970s generation. Lonesome and dazed boys withdraw themselves from the turbulent world to become silent spectators of the dynamic society, and to flourish in their self-created subconscious world. Not only are these sober introspections are an era of collective experience, resonating emphasis on subjectivity rather than the objective world, they are also propositions on the fundamental questions of being, such as the identity, origin and future of oneself, from the infected, positive memory of a child refusing to grow up - a modern day Peter Pan - who searches for an idea of perfection and order. Li Jikai moves freely between light humour and gravity of issues in this in-between realm of reality and imagination in which the characters have lost the past but have not really built the future.

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