A fascination with Chinese culture led painter Christian de Laubadere to move to Shanghai, where he began to synthesize traditional Chinese visual vocabularies with European painting. His “Necks” series focuses on the backs of women’s heads and their hairstyles, jewelry, and clothing. De Laubadere considers the neck to be the most feminine, sensual, and beautiful part of a woman’s body—a typically hidden area that a woman cannot see on herself. Constructing dresses from antique fabrics and printed papers and sculpting coifs inspired by traditional Chinese Tang and Qing styles of dress, he seeks to give his subjects individual identities. His sfumato backgrounds, a nod to the work of Leonardo da Vinci, create the illusion of depth while synthesizing regional artistic influences and reflecting the artist’s personal biography.