Born: Jianyang, Sichuan province, 1981. Lives and works in Beijing.
“The Internet is very important to young people these days,” Li Bo says—not least to this artist himself. “All of my images are appropriated from the Internet and reassembled in a systematic way,” he explains. He paints this Web flotsam with meticulous realism, resizing the images to identical heights and lining them up against a colourless background. The result for viewers is simultaneous free association and disorientation. Grouped together with no context but each other, the images seem to be part of a secret code, challenging people to identify (or invent) connections between them. Of these there is “an endless stream”, Li Bo says. Cultural background plays a big role: most of his works include at least one allusion to Chinese history or current events. In Three Parts Falling in Love: Hidden Concubine Rabbit (2008), the policemen carrying the scarlet-clad “concubine” refer to the attempted censorship of a photograph by the Gao Brothers that was in turn based on a misinterpretation of a news photo.