ROBBBB Displays His Body with “Selfie Forward” in Beijing

Filial piety (Xiao Jing) is one of the virtues of Confucian thought (孝): a love and respect for one’s parents and ancestors. In the West we talk of filial piety in the context of fraternal love, indeed all benevolent actions.

Street Artist ROBBBB in Beijing is contemplating, as most of us do in our 20s, what his connection is to his society and his family and ancestors especially as a representative of the future as well as the past. One aspect that stays more or less the same in every culture is what our bodies look like, even if our clothing and hairstyles are in a continuous evolution. Today our bodies are changing as well thanks to plastic surgery and additive technology.

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ROBBB “Selfie Forward” Beijing, China. May 2016. (photo © ROBBBB)

With this essential self examination ROBBB brings it up to date with his own Street Art campaign called “Selfie foreward”, a series of painted portions of his own body wheat-pasted on the streets. He segments the view of his corpus, giving a closer examination of physical details down to the follicle texture, augmented by an abstractly patterned wrapping across the surface that looks like projected light waves or an ultra-thin metal-alloy plating of decorative skin. Perhaps ROBBBB is seeing himself as a cyborg of organic and biomechatronic body parts.

“This series is about my body,” ROBBBB says, “There is an old saying China that goes “Our bodies-to every hair and bit of skin – are received from our parents.” In any case, he says, with this very original take on the relatively modern selfie, “I’ve been thinking deeply about contradictions and conflicts between youth as a social group and my place in society.”

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ROBBB “Selfie Forward” Beijing, China. May 2016. (photo © ROBBBB)

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ROBBB “Selfie Forward” Beijing, China. May 2016. (photo © ROBBBB)

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ROBBB “Selfie Forward” Beijing, China. May 2016. (photo © ROBBBB)

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ROBBB “Selfie Forward” Beijing, China. May 2016. (photo © ROBBBB)

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ROBBB “Selfie Forward” Beijing, China. May 2016. (photo © ROBBBB)

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ROBBB “Selfie Forward” Beijing, China. May 2016. (photo © ROBBBB)

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ROBBB “Selfie Forward” Beijing, China. May 2016. (photo © ROBBBB)

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ROBBB “Selfie Forward” Beijing, China. May 2016. (photo © ROBBBB)

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ROBBB “Selfie Forward” Beijing, China. May 2016. (photo © ROBBBB)

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