Jiaqi Li



The following statement based on three key terms: the way of seeing, duality, and the use of characters (words) as images.

I paint to re-think our way of seeing. Today, the media of television attacks the words, and the mobile phone connects people in an intangible way. These electronic objects luminate in the dark. The lights attract and absorb our attention. Utopian imagination becomes a cover for traumatized reality. With 80% of our knowledge of the world derived from narratives rather than direct experiences, we find ourselves living in a time that aligns with Jean Baudrillard’s theories from four decades ago. The preoccupation with discerning what is real or unreal has lost its urgency.

During my formative years, Hollywood played a significant role in shaping my worldview but in voids it also created pockets of alien culture. The Hollywood way of seeing - emphasizing appearance visually and confrontation narratively - subtly permeates my artistic practice. I strive to find opposition and conflict in my paintings, whether it be between “real and unreal,” “reality and virtual,” “you and I,” “positive and negative,” or “inside and outside.” Duality runs through my work.

Characters, or words, are also an indispensable part of my work. Their shape have a strong stability once the design is finalized. Visually, they support half of each painting. Conceptually, they deconstruct the image’s content. These characters are not merely written; they are meticulously painted. Their ornate nature harkens back to the theory of Hollywood’s way of seeing, where appearances dominate. Through their grandiose styles and designs, they reflect the superficiality prevalent in the world.