In his artistic practice, Pu Jie attempts to use fragments of collective memory as well as his
own personal experiences to compose a narrative of a contemporary way of existence in the
shadow of Chinaʼs recent past. Avoiding trappings of both nostalgia and amnesia, he
references instead life in the rapidly expanding urban metropolis and its oscillating imageries
of eroticism, political propaganda and ancient myths. Monochromatic colors in red, yellow and
blue dominate his large-scale paintings. The compositions are not subject to the classical
central perspective, but consist of collage figures and texts that are noticeable as vast bases
in favor of other images, usually painted with striking contours. The different layers of imagery
are brought together in the picture by the unifying aesthetic expression, which is a blend of
pop and comic strips. Pu Jie´s works comment on a variety of themes that he conjures
up in dynamic and intense scenes. Here, he underscores illusory aspects of the mediated
day-to-day reality of a rapidly changing society. Pu Jie juxtaposes seemingly contrasting
narratives and memories as an attempt to show the fragmentary, ever-shifting and therefore
incoherent nature of life. Focusing on the urban context in Shanghai, Pu Jie also touches
upon the tabula rasa approach that is so prominent in urban development, where
the destruction of entire neighborhoods is cause for severe social implications.
“Modernization” (2001) features a plastic replica of the Pudong Tower in Shanghai, which
was set on fire by the artist resulting in ashes of a city in ruin.

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