Stellina’s pen mightier than Xi Jinping’s sword

The cartoonist’s new exhibition pokes fun at the Chinese leader and Taiwan’s diplomatic upheavals

Taiwan News
Date: 2019/06/22
By: Teng Pei-ju, Taiwan News, Staff Reporter

Caricatures created by Taiwanese political cartoonist Stellina Chen (Source: Stellina Chen)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A gold-framed watercolor painting hangs on a bright red wall. In the painting, China’s leader Xi Jinping (習近平), dressed in a yellow imperial gown adorned with embroidery, reclines on the back of a dragon. The modern emperor wears a restrained smile under his fringed court hat.

The painting sums up Stellina Chen’s new exhibition of political cartoons, which is called, “Xi is All Over.” Among the 23 showcased images created by the 27-year-old Taiwanese cartoonist, the majority are associated with turbulent cross-strait relations and the leader of the Chinese Communist Party.

In a nearby illustration, Danilo Medina, president of the Dominican Republic, is having a body checkup to find out the reason for his stomach problem. The doctor tells him he has consumed too much Chinese money, “You ate too much recently!” In another caricature, Xi Jinping is busy making art. The Chinese leader is trying to glue his nation’s five stars on the flag of Taiwan. These bitingly funny depictions of the diplomatic adversity show how Beijing poaches Taiwan’s allies, isolates the nation from the international community, and attempts to undermine its sovereignty.

China’s bullying and threats are the norm for the 23 million people living in Taiwan, regardless of their age, ethnicity, or socio-economic status. The government of Taiwan storms protests every now and again an ally switches recognition from Taiwan to China, or every spring when the World Health Assembly (WHA) is held in Geneva and the country is again excluded. While many Taiwanese learn to accept these political and diplomatic upheavals, Stellina fights back with her pen and pokes fun at the political turbulence.    [FULL  STORY]

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