Artwork of the month by Yue Minjun

1July 2011

I love looking at this painting, but I am unable to stare it down for long.  Its content reminds me of how the world works for most people, and really laughing through the lies is a disappointing way to live.
Yue Minjun is a contemporary Chinese artist living in Beijing.  His work is obvious in telling us the mental state of his world.  He is a cynical realist.  Are these men frozen in states of laughter, or simply holding that happy smile for presentation?  They are anything but laughing.
This is a masterwork, if even only for its content.
Yue Minjun
Chinese, born 1962
2007, oil on canvas

This work is currently on display at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts on the second floor…
…go see it, and take some time contemplating the reason they smile.