"Starry Night" belongs to the "Snatched Ecstasy" collection, a set of 20 lithographs in a brushed aluminum case and produced in a limited edition of 130 rare books. The collection is accompanied by a set of poems by the renowned Poet Fernando Arrabal. In this lithograph the laughing figures have on the background two planets, one of which is Saturn.
Yue Minjun’s works are instantly recognizable by the characteristic laughing figure, actually the artist himself, depicted in various guises in virtually all his works. The figure has more teeth than one could possibly want, like the expensive smiles of fashion models advertising the latest whitening power of a toothpaste brand. This figure also shares the exaggerated nature of these advertising images. Yue Minjun’s trademark smile is many things at once. It is hilarious and infectious yet cynical and mocking. It appears superficial, mindless, even ridiculous but is deeply revealing and compelling. There are instant parallels to be drawn with the Social Realist propaganda posters of earlier eras of communism.
“But there is nothing saturnine in this carnival of laughter. All these fools will probably perish trodden down pulverized by an unspeakable and awesome apocalypse of whose menace they are not even aware.„