GAO QIANG, Swimming Mao, 2003
several works in the collection
With his swim in the Yangtze river in 1966, the Chinese leader Mao proved his fitness to his people. Gao Qiang painted a series of ‘Swimming Mao’ based on press photos. With technical skill he created critical scenes in which Mao contrasts sharply with the bloody water around him. Since this event took place on the verge of the Cultural Revolution, the artist questions this ‘reality’ by rewriting these collective memories with paint.