Linjie Deng is a multi-talented conceptual artist in New York City. The 28-year-old artist moved to NYC in 2015 after graduating from art college in Beijing, then received his MFA degree from the School of Visual Arts in New York. Multimedia art, such as ink art, participatory art and performance art have always been a passion and hobby in Deng’s life. He started studying Chinese ink art and calligraphy at six years old. Now, his artwork has also migrated to a space within digital media and video. He also experiments with new media art from a Conceptualist position. Deng’s works have been shown in China, the Museum of Chinese in America, Carlton Fine Arts Ltd, The Hamptons Virtual Art Fair, and have been featured by The United Nations.‌

Tell us a bit about yourself and the pieces that you’ve created for your NFT drop on Portion.

"I’m Linjie Deng. I don’t define myself by a single medium, because I don’t want to limit my potential by presenting myself as just one kind of creator:  printmaker, landscape painter, digital artist, Pop artist. I’m an ARTIST. I do Chinese Calligraphy, acrylic painting, participatory art, performance art, and NFTs. Just like Portion’s Street + Pop Art Week – my artistic style has no boundaries, no rules, and no reservations.

The two pieces that I’ve created for this drop describe my feelings about love. The first  piece is “Kiss Me, Kill Me.” Love is not just “chocolate,” “roses,” or “rings.” Love means feeling good, but also becoming vulnerable – giving someone the chance to hurt you. People live for love, people die for love, people kill for love. Especially between lovers. So, I just combined the two sides of love in my paintings to show this fact to public."

"Kiss Me, Kill Me" by Linjie Deng

"The second piece is “Suck Me, Fuck Me”. My lollipop is sweet, honey flavored and beautiful. But there is no sweet without sweat. Everything has two sides, love is not an exception. Love is the most dangerous and powerful weapon. So, we must be careful while we enjoy the pleasure of love."

"Suck Me, Fuck Me" by Linjie Deng

"Everybody talks about NFTs now. Most collectors only care about long-term investment value, commercial value, and/or marketing value. And that’s ok. As an artist, I’d like to talk about artistic value. That’s why I chose the most popular and personal topic —love, as my first pieces to mint on Portion. For me, an artist is a soul massager. I want my viewers’ souls to be touched by my NFT art when they see it on Portion on June 18th."

Where do you find inspiration? What’s your creative process? What emotions do you tap into when creating?

"Most times I find inspiration from my personal life experiences, especially when I feel hurt or have some problem. I can always find ways in the art world to portray those feelings and solutions, because art is my best weapon.

When I create a new painting, the idea or concept is the first and most important aspect of the work. Once I get the idea, I started questioning myself like, "Why yellow? Why not blue? Why this visual style?" I have to convince myself that the art I create will fulfill my concept. After I finish the brain-thinking part, then I start the hand-making part, using my hands and materials to produce the art. At that point, I only focus on the physical creation of the piece."

What are some of your observations about the emerging behaviors in the NFT space?

"The essential issue with NFTs is that nobody really knows what the hell is going on. This is such a brand new field for the public. There is no standard answer to describe the NFT world. Everyone is a speculator. Ownership is being totally redefined.

Art is used here not always as an end product, but as a tool to further the larger project, which is in part developing new forms of viewing, but also trading, speculation, and circulation. Art is just a tool in this scenario. So, is the art using the NFT? Or is the NFT is using the art? Really, we are just all learning together."

On 6.18, Linjie Deng will drop 2 works on Portion. Preview the pieces.

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