February 06, 2019    Michael Byers

Here’s a great series by MICHAEL BYERS for Pacific Standard Magazine on an equally interesting subject Mr. Chen. For those that are not familiar, the story called “Mr. Chen’s Mountain” is about a mysterious Chinese billionaire. “The story of a Chinese billionaire who moved back home, setting his mansion down in the middle of his economically depressed ancestral village.” Not much is known about this man, and very few photos exist of him as well. “From afar, Mr. Chen’s mansion resembles a mosque with a gold dome, but on closer inspection has the look of a national treasury, its windows gleaming gold. Or a palazzo crossed with the Reichstag as imagined by a 1960s mafioso in Vegas. Its vast grounds are filled with Italianate statues crafted out of jade, marble, granite, and other stone. Roman soldiers on horseback rear with spears from the rooftop while maidens in togas pour liquid from jugs. A statue of an American soldier, machine gun in hand, guards the side gate to the grounds along with a more traditional Chinese demon and a statue of a pudgy cop.”