The artist Xiao Se (b.1970) is best known for his richly detailed paintings that skillfully combine the realist portrayal of commoners’ lived experiences in contemporary China and the figures and religious symbols from the early Renaissance masterpieces. What lies behind the seemingly surrealist expression, however, are the artist’s extraordinary experiences and lessons from life. Xiao grew up in Beijing in the second half of the Cultural Revolution (1966-1976). He lived the tumultuous socio-political and cultural climate during the 1978 liberalist economic reform and the late ’80s student movements. His extensive travels in the Chinese border cities and hinterland cultivated his critical insight into the diverse living conditions of humans and their desire for a good life. After recovering from a serious illness in 2019, Xiao realized that a desire for material gain, the illiberal political system, and cyber governance have turned cultural diversity into an emergency of our time. Lechbinska Gallery is pleased to present oil paintings by Xiao, covering his Classicist-style paintings and new surrealist paintings.