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Meet the Chinese artist breaking taboos for fun, not politics

March 23, 2018

Artist Lu Yang is often labeled according to the themes she explores, the digital media she works with or for simply being young and Chinese. But the 33-year-old isn't interested in categorization.




"I am not a new media artist, nor a post-internet one," she said in phone interview. "I don't even understand what 'post-internet' means. I am many things."

Lu Yang's art is, indeed, difficult to classify. Her output spans 3D-animated films, video game-like installations, holograms, neon, VR and even software manipulation, often with overt Japanese manga and anime references. Music -- electronic and always frenzied -- features prominently.



If one were to describe Lu's work, "intentionally brash" would be a good place to start. Adjectives like bold, loud and boundary-pushing might come a close second.

"I am drawn to many different things," the Shanghai-born and -based artist said, "and I just like to combine them in the pieces I make, even if they wouldn't normally be associated with one another. I like the sense of freedom I get from that."




Among Lu's many fascinations are pop culture -- from Japan, especially -- eastern religions and philosophy. Gender identity, sexuality, consciousness, neuroscience, death and the human body all feature widely in her acclaimed videos and installations, which have been exhibited in and outside China.


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