Liu Bolin – The Disappearing or Invisible Man


invisible man shelf of panda

Liu Bolin, a Chinese artist, does not want to stand out or be in the spotlight. Instead, he wishes to be inconspicuous and fade into the background so that his artwork can speak for itself. What’s surprising here is that Liu Bolin himself is the artwork. He sees himself as a blank canvas and paints on himself to blend into the surroundings. He is called the “Invisible Man” and is popular worldwide. He is famous for disappearing from plain sight in front of everyone.

He paints not only his clothing, but also his skin to blend smoothly into the surroundings. He has disappeared into magazine racks, staircases, store shelves and many other places. He, along with his assistants, carefully mark, layout and paint him and his clothing so that he blends into his surroundings so perfectly that he cannot be detected by anyone, which is why he is called the Invisible Man.

Liu Bolin’s unconventional art begs the question: why did he choose such an unusual method? According to Liu Bolin, it is his way to protest against the Chinese government who want the people to fade into the background and silently comply with all the directives of the government. He started using his artwork as a means of silent protest and to bring focus to the lack of protection the artists in China received from the government. Thus far, Liu Bolin has been safe from the Chinese government who has silenced numerous protest artists before.

The Invisible Man of China

invisible man shelf of panda

Liu Bolin stands before a shelf full of panda toys.

 invisible man temple of heaven

The Chinese artist painted to blend in with the Temple of Heaven.

 invisible man teatro alla scala

Liu Bolin poses for a picture in a seat at the Teatro alla Scala in Milan.

 invisible man great wall

Liu Bolin is standing in front of the Great Wall of China.

 invisible man instant noodles

Liu Bolin is standing before a shelf of instant noodles.

 invisible man bulldozer

Liu Bolin hiding in front of a bulldozer.


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Liu Bolin – The Disappearing or Invisible Man

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