As a satellite of f/stop, the Konfuzius-Institut Leipizig brings Flying High: Young Chinese Photography to KKW. For me, China conjures colourful and exotic images, but also a place where people are oppressed. I was delighted to see China through the eyes of people who actually live there.
Curators Sylvia Pollex and Malina Becker have assembled the work of nine Chinese photographers and video artists, many of who deal with social change.
I was moved to tears by Sim Chi Yin‘s short film, Dying to breathe, documenting a gold miner who was suffering from silicosis. Naturally I was moved by his pain, but Sim Chi Yin manages to show the range of emotions felt by the carers. This is because, while she had just gone there to document the topic in general, she found a way for him to have an operation that prolonged his life. She grew very close to the family and discovered a true love story.
In River City Wang Yuan Ling shows the living conditions of the poor in his hometown of Chongqing. His images range from the very personal to unreal landscapes, and give a softness to humanise a monumental problem.
Fan Shisan addresses the loneliness of the single-child generation in China. Xu Xiaoxiao goes inside a blowup doll factory can comes out with beautiful cotton candy images. Other artists like Wang Ningde and Jiang Pengyi experiment with the technical possibilities of photography.
Today at 3.30 pm, Wang Ningde will be speaking about his truly unique process. It will be in Mandarin and translated into English.
The exhibition is part of the KKW art director Candace Goodrich‘s high quality art program that started in 2015 and will end later this year. Flying High: Young Chinese Photography will be included in her upcoming catalog. She has brought in a wide range of international, multi-disciplinary work that responded to the building, as well as the issues our modern society faces.
Flying High: Young Chinese Photography
The exhibition is free
23 June – 10 July
with video and photography workshops