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Suspended disbelief

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Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

Chinese artist Li Wei creates images of himself and his friends being thrown off buildings, dangling from bridges and hanging off cars, all in the name of art. Li's photos can take up to six months to set up and involve huge crews organising props such as smoke, mirrors, wires and cranes. After the photographs are taken the father of one removes traces of the wires with a computer. Li, from Beijing, said: "One of the most difficult and expensive shots was where myself and 12 people were flying behind a car and we had to use a lot of cranes to keep us all suspended"
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

"My favourite photograph features my daughter holding some helium balloons and I am standing on them in mid air. It was lovely working with my daughter and the photo represents my feelings," he said
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

The 40 year old has been producing works since 1999 and has made tens of thousands of pounds from his photographs. He said: "I like to achieve the impossible. I have hurtled to the earth like a meteorite and flown through the air. My pictures show the unstable, there's a lot of danger and I love to create that feeling in my work"
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

"Some of the images can be really complex and take up to six months to put together whereas some are very simple and can be planned in a sketch and shot immediately"
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

"The images can involve me getting battered around a bit - most times I will pick up an injury from the stunt wires, one time I got my head stuck in a pane of smashed glass"
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

"It can be dangerous, but I like to ride that line, to me it's worth it to defy gravity or fly through the air," he said
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei


A Pause for Humanity 3
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

Live at the High Place 1
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

On the Surface of the Earth
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

His work has been featured on popular wesites
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

Don't try this at home, particularly if - like performance artist Li Wei - you live in a tower block
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

These amazing photographs are not montages and do not involve any computer trickery
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

he relies on his own acrobatic skills, honed from years of martial arts training
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

The pictures feature Wei suspended in a string of impossible situations at locations across Hong Kong and China
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

Others include images of him plunging through a car windscreen...
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

...embedded in ice...
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

...and floating mid-air with a bunch of friends perched on his back
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

"I am fascinated by the unstable and dangerous sides of art and I hope my works reflect these aspects," he says
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

"Sometimes I am in real danger - I have to hang myself high with steel wires and people do get a little worried for me - but I am fine"
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

We can't help wondering whether it might not be easier - and safer - to use Photoshop
Suspended disbelief: the amazing art of Li Wei

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