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WATCH: Artist Linshu Explores China’s Erotic Past With Tiger Pride

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Spring Festival — more commonly known in the West as Chinese New Year — has arrived, meaning we are now in the Year of the Tiger. People born as ‘tigers’ are often associated with bravery, confidence, and competitiveness. To honor these traits, RADII has teamed up with Peddlers Gin to bring you ‘Spirit of the Tiger’ — a selection of inspiring stories from fascinating tigers across China.

Linshu was born in the Year of the Tiger more than three decades ago, in 1986. Now an artist in Shanghai, her work reveals an unexpectedly colorful and intimate side of China’s dynamic history.

She spends night after night stooped over her drawing table in a farmhouse in northern Shanghai. She finds inspiration in everything from colorful folk art to Chun Gong — an ancient style that depicts erotic scenes from past dynasties.

Peddlers Tigers Linshu

Linshu recently discovered that her family from Shanxi province in North China descends from Mongolian invaders hundreds of years ago. “I always knew I had a warrior in me somewhere,” she says.

Making a career as an artist can be lonely, but to her, being a tiger means persevering and sticking to what she loves — even if that means spending nights alone in a cold Shanghai farmhouse. At least, she says, she can talk to the sensual characters from the past who flow from her brush.

Click here for more videos from the ‘Spirit of the Tiger’ series.

All images via Graeme Kennedy

Peddlers Gin
Born on the back streets of Shanghai, the hustle and bustle of the world’s biggest trading port was the perfect inspiration for a more adventurous gin. As China’s first craft gin, Peddlers heroes local ingredients like Sichuan pepper, Buddha’s hand and Gansu lotus. With medals from San Francisco Spirits Awards and CWSA, Peddlers proudly challenges perceptions of what it means to be made in China.
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