Chinese Eyes: Contemporary Chinese Photography
XING Danwen » WENG Fen » WANG Jinsong » MA Liuming » SHAO Yinong & MU Chen » LIU Wei (*1972) » LIN Yilin » YANG Yong »
Exhibition: 3 Jun – 26 Jun 2004
42 East 76th Street
NY 10021 New York
61 Cadogan Square
SW1X 0HZ London
Uptown: 42 East 76th Street, New York, NY 10021 Private View: Wednesday, June 2nd, 6-8pm The Annex: 601 West 26th Street, 14th floor, New York, NY 10001 Private View: Friday, June 4th, 6-8pm This is a moment in New York to recognize contemporary photography from China. Today, China is engaged in the most rapid and dramatic economic and cultural transition in its history. Goedhuis Contemporary presents recent works by eight of the leading contemporary photographers in China at its Uptown gallery and at The Annex in Chelsea to give maximum exposure to this new generation of artists-a generation which grew up with only dim memories of the Cultural Revolution and currently facing pressures of a new global culture. A fully illustrated catalogue written by Xenia Tetmajer von Przerwa has been published to coincide with the ICP (International Center of Photography, New York) exhibition of new Chinese photography also opening this June. Weng Peijun (aka Weng Fen) addresses the problems of urbanization in his native south China and related problems of identity. The figures that stare away from the camera in his large color images contemplate the moment of transition that China faces. Simultaneously, Yang Yong, also from Southern China, confronts these figures of youth and captures an atmosphere of ennui and disillusionment among the rapidly growing youth culture in Shenzhen. Liu Wei expresses both pride and hope inherent in these changes and China's ambitious building program on the one hand, but also a wistful dismay at the consequences of haphazard destruction. The performances by Lin Yilin navigate a visual journey of social and cultural transformation through his constructions of non-functional brick walls and monuments-he has developed a vocabulary that negotiates the human body in its constructed environment. Wang Jinsong, trained as a painter, also addresses issues of abandonment and social dislocation in his candid and isolated images of urban life. Beijing couple Shao Yinong and Mu Chen, employ traditional hand-dyed photograph techniques and large format color photographs that generate a symbolic language of cultural memory and nostalgia. Images of assembly halls used during the Cultural Revolution and portraits of orphaned children magnify their personal attention to the effects of abandonment. Ma Liuming explores his own relation to the provocative mysteries (in China at least) of gender definition. His well recognized work recently documents international performances in London, Lyon, Jakarta, and Montreal. Xing Danwen, trained in New York, is concerned with the standardization of modern life. Her recent Duplication series of toy parts reflect her concern with the excesses of consumption in contemporary China and her misgivings about the consequences of some avenues of recent bioengineering technology.