Tianju Duan China

Cover Image - Tianju Duan

Growing up in Western China, illustrator Tianju Duan would spend a lot of his time at home drawing while his classmates would be out and about playing sports or instruments. Now, “being different” is a signature element in his work, and his series “Boy Power!” explores society’s gradually evolving view of what it means to be a man. Moving from China to Cuba, Spain, the UK, then Denmark, Tianju noticed each place he lived in seemed more open about gender rules than the last, encouraging him to not only come to terms with his own sexual identity, but also to explore the idea of masculinity in general. In the series we see various presentations of men worked into abstract forms and distinct color blocks, each holding a confident yet sensual pose, in an attempt to throw toxic masculinity out the window.