Liu Bolin: The Master of Camouflage

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Friday, May 24, 2019

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Liu Bolin timelapse at TED2013 from TED Blog on Vimeo.



Born in Shandong, China in 1973, Liu Bolin is a Chinese artist known for taking photographs of himself, painted in order to blend in with the background.He graduated from the Sculpture Department of Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing. Liu belongs to the generation that came of age in the early 1990s, when China emerged from the rubble of the Cultural Revolution and was beginning to enjoy rapid economic growth and relative political stability.


liu bolin 15


Since his first solo shows in Beijing in 1998, Liu Bolin's work has received international recognition. Among other international venues, his distinctive photographs and sculptures have been shown at the major contemporary photography festival Les Recontres d'Arles and he had solo shows at Dashanzi Art Zone in Beijing (2007), Galerie Bertin-Toublanc in Paris (2007), Eli Klein Fine Art in New York (2008), Boxart Gallery in Verona (2008), Forma Foundation for Photography in Milan (2010).




As you can see, Liu Bolin has perfected the art of paint camuflage by carefully and meticuosly staging and preparing each scene to be captured flawlessly with his body blending in the photograph.  Many would think that his art is a result of photoshop even though it is being created as real images snapshots.




The photo gallery below includes some of his work on the "Hiding in the City" series. Lui, also known as the Chinese Chameleon, spends about 10 hours being painted for each work so he perfectly matches the background.




Bolin was recently in New York City to create the latest  installment of his project 'Hiding in the City,' which previously included Beijing and Venice.  




You can see him above at Wall Street and the famous Bull sculpture which highlights his most recent work using New York City sourrounding in the "Art of Camouflage"