Chen Jiagang - Apprehension, 2009 (detail)

Chen Jiagang

December 5, 2013

A Chinese photographer, Chen Jiagang combines the images of the Chinese countryside, industrial architecture and people in a way that calls into question China’s past and present.

Born in 1962 in Chong Qing, Jiagang currently lives and works in Beijing. He began his career as a celebrated architect and real estate developer before making the transition to photography. He has twice been awarded the Excellent Works Award at the annual China Photographic Arts Exhibitions. He has had exhibitions of his works in Asia, Europe and the United States. His works are in the collections of the New York Museum of Modern Art and the Museo del Territorio. He is also the founder of the Sichuan Upriver Museum, the first private museum in China and the author of Third Front.

Building a complex and ambiguous tension between the foreground and the background, between the individual and society, the man and his environment, Jiagang's works comment on the rapid economic growth and the effects of urbanization on morals in society and human relationships. His works are characterized by a hazy color palate and fading movements that create a romantic and dreamlike sense of nostalgia, memory and of disappearing history.

Featured image: Chen Jiagang - Apprehension, 2009 (detail). C-print. 65 × 75 in. 165.1 × 190.5 cm. This is part of a limited edition set. Photo courtesy Waterhouse & Dodd