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Through avant-garde oil paintings and works on paper, Beijing-based artist Yue Minjun (b.1962) employs self-portraiture to explore broader cultural and societal landscapes. By multiplying scores of images of himself laughing, Minjun creates casts of grinning characters to recreate poses and scenes from the Western canon of art history. In a 2007 sale at Sotheby’s, his painting, the 'Execution,' sold for $5.9, becoming the most expensive work of Chinese contemporary art to be sold at the time.