This acrylic painting depicts a motley band of unlikely animals—including a wolf, a squirrel, a snail, and a rat—seemingly in transit. Set against a white background, a circular form portraying the moon or the sun hangs above the painting’s protagonists. From here, viewers are invited to come up with their own version of how this bizarre story unfolds. Unlike his contemporaries who conceptualised art as a form of political discourse in China through the 1990s, Ji Dachun grounded his practice in exploring the absurd. In his semi-abstract paintings like this one, time and plot are eliminated. Here, the work follows the Surrealist tradition of featuring detailed and dreamlike imagery. Painted in photorealistic style, Fairy Tale or Dream creates a window into a reality in which reason, social norms, and social hierarchy don’t exist. Through a surreal humour, the work perhaps suggests that the human situation is essentially absurd and devoid of purpose.