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Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The Blind, Leading

A full page illustration for the International Herald Tribune quarterly magazine- the global Edition of the New York Times based in Paris.  It accompanies a personal account by a Chinese writer, Bi Feiyu, on the life and dignity of the blind. How they see better than "normal people" in the materialistic and vulgar society we are living in. In particular, Blind masseurs-the subject of his latest book. 

Here is an extract -'I was born in 1964 and grew up during the Cultural Revolution. I saw many big-character posters that were often used for rabid attacks, and I witnessed many public denunciations. The red terror in those days was of course delivered through whipping and beating. But more often, it was delivered through violent language. When I was small, I thought my father’s name was Father. One day, in the roar of a public denunciation, I learned otherwise: An old lady said to me, “Did you hear that? They’re shouting ‘Down with Bi Ming.’ Bi Ming is your father.” (Read the full article here. )

This article is very powerful to me on a personal level. My grandmother was a high-school president during the mad years of Cultural Revolution. She was prosecuted for being the "intellectual class", which was propagandaed to be the major thread of the country. I grew up hearing stories about the public denunciations, and how ethics and etiquette, which was once the core value of Chinese society, went down the drain. 

I have much pride in our long history and rich culture and it hurts very much to see, in Mr. Bi's words, "The China of today is moving forward… toward money. Every coin has become a rolling wheel, and to chase those wheels we no longer care about civility. We behave like hysterical people barking out dirty words on the street — every single word that comes out is covered with obscene saliva. Our economy is booming. People will do anything to strike it rich. This is a time of shamelessness. Whoever is mindful of the shamefulness becomes a loser." 

I am glad I got to work on this project. Thank you AD James Eric Jones!





4 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing this article and your illustration for it is gorgeous. I love the use of spiral stairs to add movement to your composition!

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  2. This is truly gorgeous. Incredibly great composition. Thanks for sharing it.

    ReplyDelete