Million Buck Smiles, Marat’s Empty Bath in Paris Show

Yue Minjun has every reason to laugh.
In 2007, one of his paintings sold at Sotheby’s (BID) in London for
2.9 million pounds ($4.47 million).

Laughing faces are the Chinese artist’s trademark. At
first, he used to portray friends. Later, he switched to self-
portraits with closed eyes and a big grin.

The Fondation Cartier in Paris has organized the first
retrospective of his work in Europe, bringing together 40,
mostly large-sized paintings and some 100 drawings.

Yue, who was born in 1962, comes from a family of oil
workers. Before he took up painting professionally, he worked as
an electrician on an offshore oil platform. He now lives in

His breakthrough on the international art scene came in
1999, when he was invited to show his work at the Venice

Yue’s laughing faces have led some

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