Go East: Zhang Jin Photography: Another Season, Three Shadow +3 Gallery by Yining He

Posted by on Jan 8, 2014 in News | 0 comments

Yining He

Another Season/Entrance, 2010 Photographer: Zhang Jin

His pictures of emptiness trace the life of ancient Chinese and involve viewers to make a dialogue with history, says Yizhong Ruan

An inaugural photography exhibition of Zhang Jin’s “Another Season” was held in Three Shadows + 3 gallery. This is the first solo exhibition of Zhang Jin after his winning on TSPA 2012. The complete series of “Another Season” contains 81 prints, themed ancient silk-road landscapes in western China, which divided into two parts addressing concepts regarding “trace of present live” and “cycle of change”.

Zhang Jin (b.1978) is a freelance photographer based in Chengdu. In 2012, he was awarded the most prestigious photography award in China initiated by Three Shadows Photography Center, which attracted approximately 358 candidates last year. Zhang Jin traveled through the eastern section of the ancient Silk Road from Xi’an to Yangguan during 2010 to 2013. Whilst he was there, he positioned himself inside the landscapes of his imagination and shot a photo series entitled Another Season during the year. As he mentioned ‘it’s the road of Buddhism coming to China, where I find my enthusiasm for the grand desert. Moreover, it has my encounter with the unknown landscape’.

Zhang Jin’s work is the adaptation of photography to Chinese philosophical and aesthetic concepts – especially through a dialogue with different kinds of representation found in various Chinese poetry and painting. As photographer says, “there are traces from the ancient civilization and the most important is an exploration for a seer. There are also natural creatures, which persistently and simply exist everywhere regardless of the dynasty or nation changes over time, with the primitive strength born from basic instinct.”

Beneath the surface of the self-consciously ‘poetic’ motifs, the landscape he shows in these photographs feel calm and peaceful. The middle format, together with the loose contrast between the soft focus and pale grounds in Zhang Jin’s photograph, evokes the aesthetics of Chinese Shan Shui painting. Also, in terms of narrative, when we look at photographs from Another Season, viewers can enter and travel through each part of the picture in turn, going from one to the other – we shall be as little bothered by the lack of a uniform viewpoint as we would be.

About Exhibition:

Zhang Jin Photography “Another Season”


Three Shadows +3 gallery

About Photographer:

Another Season/Empty Mountain, 2011 Photographer: Zhang Jin

Another Season/The Circle of Change, 2011 Photographer: Zhang Jin

Go East: A Window to the Contemporary Chinese Photography by Yining He

Posted by on Jan 8, 2014 in News | 0 comments

Yining He

Go East” is a blog offering updated news on contemporary Chinese photography on a weekly basis.

Entering the new millennium, as the world’s second largest economy, China is undergoing the most rapid urbanization. As a result of these emerging challenges and creative energies, contemporary Chinese photography has flourished into one of the most vibrant art forms of our time.

In the last ten years, fuelled by international dealers, collectors and a booming economy, the market for contemporary Chinese photography has rapidly grown. Many 60s and 70s born Chinese artists smartly adopted conceptual photography by employing a variety of digital techniques and aesthetic strategies to acquire the attention of art curators, critic and photography dealers. Chinese leading galleries and art centers opened their doors to photography; photography galleries began to develop in Beijing and Shanghai. There are increasingly greater numbers of photography festivals, strongly supported by the government, and which have gained international recognition. In addition, the photography auction market in China has also grown in the past few years.

In the meantime, a genre of ‘personal photography’ first emerged in Guangzhou in the early 2000s, and then spread across Mainland China. Influenced by the work of photographers such as Wolfgang Tillmans, Terry Richardson and many others, young generations use photography to emphasize self-expression and private experiences. They post photographs on Internet blogs and photo sharing sites including Flickr, Tumblr and recently on their personal websites. Other genres of contemporary photography are also popular among young practitioners. Many photographers dedicate themselves to new landscape photography, influenced by New Topographics and the Düsseldorf School. Younger generations of photography scholars and writers have emerged, for example self-publishing houses such as Jiazazhi and Banana Fish.

In spite of the fact that western curators, critics and photography dealers are seemingly interested in Chinese photography, there are hardly any websites or blogs exploring the area. Thanks to Paul Lowe, my course director in MA Photojournalism and Documentary Photography at London College of Communication, I‘ve been encouraged to start this project. Basing my research on the industry and my network of connections, “Go East” is aimed at shinning a light on Contemporary Chinese Photography. The blog will offer updated news on contemporary Chinese photography to Westerns audience on a weekly basis. It also covers interviews,book reviews and features in all areas.

If you would like to know more about the blog, please don’t hesitate to contact me:

About me:

Born in 1986, I am a professional feature and column writer in art and photography, history and culture, travel and lifestyle. I have covered stories across China and Europe, which have been published in more than a hundred articles for many leading magazines, newspapers and organizations. I have also been writing and translating photography books since 2010.

Apart from writing, I am also a social documentary photographer who specializes in telling stories on multiple platforms using text, photographs, archives and social media. My works has been seen in group and solo exhibitions in China, USA and England.

To see more of my work please check:

Photographer: Zhang Lijie

Photographer: Huang Zhenwei

Photographer: Yuan Xiaopeng


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