chromogenic colour print
150 x 126 cm
Han Lei subverts the tropes of idealised beauty found in western oil paintings of the nude and in classical Chinese novels. Instead, his lens is focused on ordinary women with imperfect bodies who could have just walked off the street and removed their clothing. This trio, reminiscent of Rubens’ similarly large-bodied Three Graces, adorned with satin bunny ears and wearing fluffy Panda slippers, are a self-possessed and self-contained group. With their cellulite and folds of flesh their real bodies may not pass the judgement of those who set standards of female beauty, yet even with their backs turned to us their selfhood is apparent, despite their tacky, ‘cutesy’ accoutrements.