Spoleto Festival unveils 2012 poster

Spoleto Festival USA unveils its 2012 poster, which depicts a portion of the painting ìBeastî by Li Songsong, a young Chinese artist well known in the People's Republic for his large-scale compositions which consist of thick, colorful impasto. It's a bit of a political statement, one that coincides with the presentation of a Chinese opera, "Feng Yi Ting." (Provided)

Each year, Spoleto Festival USA requisitions a visual emblem meant to represent the array of the festival’s musical and theatrical offerings.

This year, it went with a detail of Chinese artist Li Songsong’s “Beast,” an image based on a photograph but highly transformed by thick applications of paint.

Unlike past posters, which often feature bright colors, abstractions and bold designs, Li Songsong’s paintings are subtle, evocative, “in some ways secret,” Festival General Director Nigel Redden said at Thursday’s unveiling. “They imply more than they show.”

The poster selection is significant in that it makes a subtle connection to some of the Festival’s programming. One of its two opera productions is “Feng Yi Ting” by Chinese composer Guo Wenging. It tells the story of a seducation and murder that saves an empire.

“The opera also implies things,” Redden said.

Read more in Friday’s editions of The Post and Courier.