Liu Bolin became nearly invisible at Ruinart's event.
Photo: Samantha Nandez/

Artist Liu Bolin “Disappears” During Live Performance at Ruinart’s Art Basel Champagne Fête

The Chinese artist, renowned for his “Hiding in the City” series, gave guests a glimpse into his mind-boggling process

If you’re at a party and the guest of honor is nowhere to be found, that doesn’t bode well for the party—unless, of course, the honorable guest is artist Liu Bolin, and his disappearance is a work of high art as it was at Wednesday night’s Ruinart champagne fête during Miami Art Week.

The Chinese artist has been renowned globally since his “Hiding in the City” photographs shot to popularity in 2005. In that series, which started as performance art, Liu used his body as a canvas for hyperrealistic camouflage. The images are mind-boggling—in them, Liu is essentially invisible—and invite the question, How does he do it?

Liu Bolin getting the finishing touches on his makeup before blending in to the display. Photo: Samantha Nandez/

Recommended: Mexican Artist Pia Camil Makes Waves at Art Basel in Miami Beach

Enter Ruinart, who brought Liu to the Miami Botanical Garden on Wednesday, where he shared some of his secrets. While guests sipped Ruinart rosé and grooved to beats by DJ Timo Weiland, Liu painted himself to blend into a large-scale installation of multicolored Ruinart bottles. As the evening wore on, Liu was going, going, and gone—that is, until he stepped out to mingle with guests, including sugar baron Andres Fanjul, artist Vik Muniz, fashion blogger Christie Ferrari, luxury consultant Aureta Thomollari, actress Valentina Guerra, gallerist David Castillo, and Ruinart president and CEO Frédéric Dufour.

Liu Bolin virtually disappeared before guests’ eyes. Photo: Samantha Nandez/

The fun doesn’t end here: Throughout the fair, a special Ruinart x Liu Bolin installation will be on view at the Ruinart Lounge at Art Basel, along with a Liu-inspired tasting menu at Cantonese hot spot Hakkasan. With Ruinart the official sponsor of Art Basel, it’s likely you’ll be seeing a bit of Liu everywhere—that is, if you look closely.

Cover: Liu Bolin became nearly invisible at Ruinart's event.
Photo: Samantha Nandez/


Sign up to receive the best in art, design, and culture from Galerie

Thank You
Your first newsletter will arrive shortly.