Lu was born in Dalian, China, and is currently a professor at Beijing’s Central Academy of Fine Arts. Working in sculpture, painting, photography, and installation, the artist analyzes the dichotomy of “real” and “fake,” and the manner in which such an assessment shapes the viewer’s appreciation of an object. Lu also examines the relationship between sensory perception of an object and cognitive understanding of its meaning.
Using playful techniques to create optical illusions within his pieces, Lu presents a clever twist on the concepts of real and fake, one that may require viewers to take a second look at the work before them. In one piece, the artist renders arrangements of fake flowers with meticulous detail. Through his visible effort to recreate exact copies of these bouquets, Lu turns an otherwise ordinary object into an extraordinary one, giving it increased value simply through his manner of representation.
Despite his mischievous manipulation of viewer perception, the message of Lu’s work is optimistic; the artist demonstrates for the viewer new methods to understand and appreciate an object. Here, “fake” is not viewed in a pejorative light, as the skill and ingenuity required to render a “fake” object bestow it with a significance all its own.