Fun fact: Every member of China's current politburo has his/her own official portrait. The perfectly combed man in this official-as-hell photo is, of course, China's most powerful man, President Xi Jinping.
It's a strong picture. That's probably why a "nail house" landlord in downtown Shanghai believed in the portrait's power to defeat a demolition order: The landlord, unidentified, covered his building in hundreds of copies of that photo last Friday.
So the landlord hoped that with this many Xis Jinping lined up, there's no way the house could be demolished.
Totally 100% solid and not-at-all crazy plan.
It became, as you would expect, a bit of a minor fascination for the neighborhood. Or maybe they were just kinda struck by the Windows XP tile wallpaper flashback.
Even this cat was rightly hypnotized.
Word is the landlords of the building have always been tough-asses towards the local government. In the past 10 years, since the building was less than legally built, the landlords haven't been afraid of pushing the envelope with the government.
Unfortunately, the latest bold move didn't yield the result expected. By Saturday night, a group of police officers were sent in to remove the posters, which ended the short life of a potentially great art installation.
As Xi's photos got ripped off, more Chinese characters revealed ads for "Makeup, nail polish, cosmetics, manicure, braiding." Like we said, this is a real diverse business scene. What a shame that they will be all gone soon.
Hey hey hey, be gentle with the president, OK?
Beimeng Fu is a BuzzFeed News World Reporter covering China and is based in New York.
Contact Beimeng Fu at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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