Artist calls for Aust help as China tries to stop show

Artist Badiucao says Chinese diplomats have attempted to shut down his latest exhibition in Poland.

Artist Badiucao says Chinese diplomats have attempted to shut down his latest exhibition in Poland. Photo: AAP

A Chinese-Australian artist has called for more support from the Australian government, after Chinese officials tried to shut down his latest show in Poland.

The artist, who goes by the name Badiucao, is launching his latest exhibition at the Ujazdowski Castle Centre for Contemporary Art in Warsaw on Friday.

The show is titled, Tell China’s Story Well, and the promotional image is a painting of Chinese leader Xi Jinping eating human flesh, referencing Goya’s Saturn Devouring His Son.

Chinese diplomat Yao Dongye has twice visited the museum and the embassy has also written to the Polish government to have the exhibition shut down, the artist said.

Badiucao’s artworks critique China’s internment camps in Xinjiang, its Hong Kong crackdown, COVID-19 measures, aggression in the South China Sea and threats against Taiwan.

“These are the facts that are making the Chinese government so discredited, my art is simply exposing their crimes,” the artist said.

Badiucao, who is an Australian citizen, said he had contacted the Australian embassy with concerns about his safety but has yet to speak with them.

He said he had hoped for more support.

“I am alone doing an exhibition in a foreign country, everything is quite unpredictable,” he said.

“If they fail to silence my show they will move on to more personal threats and attacks.”

A previous exhibition in Hong Hong in 2018 was shut down following threats to the artist’s family, while his shows in Italy and the Czech Republic have also faced pressure.

The exhibition also draws links between Mr Xi and Vladimir Putin’s invasion of neighbouring Ukraine.

“We all know that China is siding with Putin and supporting his invasion in different ways,” Badiucao said.

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and the Chinese Embassy have been contacted for comment.


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