Obesity was once synonymous with wealth in China. That idea has evolved into a more Western equation of excessive weight gain to the unhealthy and the undesirable. Sculptor/painter Mu Boyan places a different lens on this with his series of obese figures in varying situations. His so-called “Fatty” series appears to comment on this complicated standard. At once vulnerable and exhibitionist, full of absurdity and full of humanity, these sculptures place characters in several unlikely situations, mostly in the nude.
Some of the characters hang desperately off of ledges and other objects. Others appear to be confined in smaller spaces or in one case, a bed. All exhibit a realism and vulnerability that evoke several emotions from the viewer.
Boyan is based in Beijing, China. The artist has degrees in sculpture from the Central Academy of Fine Arts in China. The artist’s work has been shown across the world, from Italy and Russia to Switzerland, the U.S., and his native China. Boyan’s work was part of Korea’s Busan Bienalle in 2014 and seveal national exhibitions in China.