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A Monthly Culture Matrix For the Cosmopolitan Traveler

Chen Fei

Perrotin / Online / Art

Chen Fei likes bad taste. “I believe that many people do like certain ugly or not so pretty things, and being not exactly beautiful does not necessarily mean they are bad or not good,” he explains, before adding, “This is what I refer to as ‘bad taste.’” Chen came of age under China’s one-child policy, a period of pop-culture explosion that created a collective taste among Chen’s generation of only-children. But Chen defies the collective in his narrative paintings (which he regards as film stills), filling them instead with details from his personal life. Chen’s gaudy hyperreal-cum-surreal compositions, satires of taste, are pseudo-self-portraits. They may not be for you, but that is his point. —C.J.F.

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