Another of the more overtly political works is Dai Daquan's Builders. It's a huge black and white print in the blatant style of socialist realism. A massive laborer takes up most of the space, with his giant hands wielding a tool in the foreground. Due to foreshortening, the hands are far larger than the head--a symbolic comment on the embodiment of a worker whose physical labor is more important than his intellect. His eyes are obscured by the shadow cast by his hard hat, completely eliminating his individuality.
The exhibit could be better only if it said more about the artists' experience of censorship in China. For this reason, I recommend seeing the exhibit on a Sunday at 2 p.m. when there are tours led by docents who might be able to answer such questions. The exhibit runs through October 23.
[Originally published in October, 2011.]
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