All artists are passionate and close to their creations, but very few can claim to be as connected to their masterpieces as 38-year old Liu Bolin, who literally melts into them - Sometimes so effectively, that it is tough to find him.
Also known as the Invisible Artist, Liu's urban camouflage paintings began as a way to make a political statement. It all happened shortly after the young artist graduated from China's prestigious Central Academy of Fine Arts. Unable to find a suitable job, he settled down with a number of fellow artists at the Soukia Village Art Campus in Beijing. However, the Chinese Government forced them to shut it down, simply because they were not too thrilled about contemporary artists getting together all the time.
This early experience of how people without jobs, homes or any kind of social status feel, is what steered him to create his rather unusual paintings. According to him, the artist in each painting is hiding in order to protect himself, whilst he restores his strength.
As you can imagine, the art he creates is not easy. He starts by finding an image that he wishes to disappear into and then, poses besides to get blended in - A process that sometimes involves not moving a limb, for ten hours at a time.
Over the years, the artist has merged himself into all kinds of places - Ranging from the Great Wall of China to rubble caused by the Sichuan earthquake. In a series of works entitled 'Hiding in Italy', he blended into famous historic places like Venice's Piazza San Marco and Milan's Duoma di Milano. He has even painted himself into supermarket shelves and best of all, the American Flag!