1. Conceptual Photography Project:
This location photography, which is my biggest photographic workload by far. From preparing to the completion took a total of one and a half month. A total of 12 photos from four sections, titled Floating Memories, because I want to use the abstract and chaotic images to express the memories of a group of people in the society: Patients with Alzheimer's disease. As we all know, the memory of Alzheimer's patients will gradually disappear with the deterioration of the disease. Some scenes in the memory tend to be confused together. The husband of my grandaunt suffered Alzheimer's disease from a few years ago. He did not remember who I am, who my mother is; did not even remember what he just said. But he remembered my grandaunt, remember important people to him, and what they have gone through, although many memories have been confused unable to be expressed with language. My purpose is to bring these abstract memories which cannot be expressed by language into photos, allow viewers to see the confused logic of memories in the mind of Alzheimer's patients; thus, make the society to pay more attention to this vulnerable group.
2. Location Photography Project:
La Vie Inachevée
About this location photography project, the main idea I would like to present is the different emotions from the different life stages, different stages have different attitudes to the life, the white dress scene represents the adolescence. Teenagers have energy and dream, that is why I designed the motions to be more dynamic. And the umbrella, smoke, and oil lamp scene, it represents the time people get lost the goal of life, confuse the life goal without sense of safety. The umbrella represents she’s looking for protection, lamp represents that she wants to find her goal back use the lamp in the smoke. The third scene with violin, I would like to represent the age of play or pursue arts, cuz arts are very important part in the life, the red fabric represents the enthusiasm to art, in the color psychology, red could represent passion. The last scene of fan and red rose represents the love or the romance of life, the rose represents the one she loves, and I designed the fans to be her pursuers (like that "Fans") who love her and surround her. The most challenge to me is make everything in the photos to be allegorical and add the story and concept of life into the photos.
3. Feminism Photography Project:
The theme of this project I chose to make a series of feminist photography portraits. Intended to express the emotions of women after they get the unfair treatment by the society. About style, I chose surrealism style. I prepared a lot of props with the visual impact, through an exaggerated stage setting to express the strong emotional agitation. Such as rope, on behalf of the bondage; neon lights and cage represented the imprisonment; blades and red fabric represented suicide; and ink in the tub represented the dark side of society. These props fully reflected the psychological trauma of women caused by the society. I hope that through a relatively exaggerated and extreme artistic form of expression to make the society pay more attention on feminism. Every year, because of unfair treatment by the society many women lived under an extreme feelings of depression, and ended their lives. Mental health care of women should become a major issue in the society. In the photographic process, I did not required the model has to have more facial expressions. I wish to render a relatively intangible soul of her, the emotions of figure were depressed; thus, that can reflect that the society does not give enough respect to women. Additionally, I purposely designed the title in Chinese calligraphy and English, the bilingual title reflects the significance of transnational study. Also, the bilingual title can express feminist issue is global; all of the world should pay more attention to this social problem.
4. Conceptual Photography Project:
Old Home in New Town
The theme of this project is about the dining table. All of the photos have the same exposure, color, composition, and angle. I want to express the daily life of new immigrants through different props, facial expressions, and action of figures. The dining table is the most active family place, so that I would like to create some daily activities on the dining table to understand the identity of a family. The key words of these five photos are old culture and new life. The first photo: The first thing the new immigrants need to do is find a house in the town. Through the painting works, I would like to express that when they move to the new house, they have to do some decoration for it. The second one: when my mom and I were eating American fast food, my mom ate the fries with chopsticks and drunk hot tea; I want to express the conflict of cultural differences through these props. About the third one: my dog Umi accompanied my mom when she working online; because immigrant families are generally small family, when I was not home Umi is the only family member can accompany my mom. There is no many props on the table that represents the mental loneliness of the new immigrants. The fourth one is also about the conflict of cultural differences, when my mom wearing a traditional Chinese costume writing antithetical couplet, I wearing the American style clothing and embellish the Christmas tree. Seems middle-aged immigrants keep the most of Chinese culture, but young people are easier to acquire new culture from the new place they live, to get into the new society. The last one is about I invited my girlfriend come my home for dinner, when my mom was still cooking in the kitchen, I want to take a bite slinkingly, but was stop by my girlfriend. Because in the traditional Chinese dining table manners, the younger need to wait all the elders began to eat. Even in the foreign country, this traditional etiquette is still applied in the immigrant families. This series of photographs I try to express a strong narrative and concept with the same composition and different cultures.
5. Constructive Photography Project:
6. Text Photography Project:
This style is very new to me, the combination of text and image brings a new visual experience. I invited a rhythmic gymnasts as the model to show some artistic gymnastic actions in my studio. About the text, I chose the bilingual way of Chinese calligraphy and computer typing with her actions. Chinese calligraphy brush stroke is very dynamic, but also with a sense of the vicissitudes of history. The computer typing English, not only on style, but also on culture and history, has a strong contrast with Chinese calligraphy. About the image editing, I made the three layers of Chinese, model, and English mutually overlapping and cross; visually result in a feeling of mixed and twined to emphasize the beautiful and international characteristic. According to three different words, the model presented in three different actions perfectly interpret of the mood of these three words.
7. Installation Photography Project:
About this installation project, I was inspired by dimensional staggered. Simply speaking, it is about the picture in the picture interacts with props in the picture. Photo is supposed to be a carrier of art, but I totally reversed it became part of the photo. About ideas, all inspiration were derived from the little things happen in everyday life, but through the way of this special presentation, these seemingly ordinary things get interesting and narrative.
8. Audio Light Painting Photography Project:
The inspiration of this project was inspired by the artists Christine Sun Kim’s artworks . I admired Kim’s concepts of the sound arts. She used the microphone to record her bellow, and use the shake of the subwoofer to drive the paint on the canvas to draw her mood of bellow randomly. The reason I like this form of art is because she not only use the concrete form to express the abstract sound, but also she use the sound painting to release stress. So that I made this project, I used MIDI, light painting, and photographs instead of microphone, oil pigment, and canvas; kept her principle of the creation of sound art, to create this project. I named it WAVES is because sound has acoustic wave and light has optical wave, and my project is the combination of the two waves. The similar concept with different materials and processing created the different artwork.
9. Conceptual Photography Project:
Brothers in the Dorm
This photography series I would like to use the different life activities to express my different emotional states to my dorm home with my roommates. For my generation in China, I cannot have any sibling, since I moved into this dorm, I felt the unprecedented feeling of sibling-hood. So I decided to shoot these six photographs to express the emotional shift from [just arrived], [friends], to [brothers] and the feeling to this home, my other home. My idea and inspiration were derived from the article Looking for Jiro Onuma by Tina Takemoto. Takemoto used a lot of photographs in her article to express the emotions of the American Japanese lived in the United States in the era of World War II, so that the form of photo-expression made me have some emotional resonance about the theme of [home] and [belonging] for my project. And the film Oxhide II by Jiayin Liu also gave me a lot of help for the inspiration. I realized the sense of home is based on the activities in your live and who you live with, not just live in the house which you call it [home]. So that, based on these two sources, I made this photographs series as my sense of home and sibling-hood.
10. Social Engagement Photography Project:
For this social engagement photography project, I decided to do some research about the topic of oceans ecological and environmental protection. Oceans pollution has been a popular topic of social concern, I was born and grown up in a coastal city in China, and I have a very special feeling to the ocean. The inspiration of this project was from the movie Mermaid by Stephen Chow, which was released in February 2016, is the highest box office in the history of Chinese film currently. This film is a comedy, but one of the educational deeply touched me, it awakened me to rethink the oceans environmental protection. I think the importance of ocean protection not only for the protection of marine animals, but humans own protection. If humans do not stop the destruction of the marine environment; ultimately, humans will hurt themselves. According to this issue, I did some research for my photographic project, and read Pentti Sammallahti and Eberhard Grames’ photo books about the harmony between humans and animals, and let me inspired. During the research, I realized that the destruction of the marine environment can be divided into four main threats: marine litter, excessive slaughter, overfishing, and oil spills. I will investigate and analyze these four threats, and describe how I reacted to these issues in my photographs, and initiate the society to pay more attention of this problem.
About the marine litter, marine litter is a man-made flotsam in the ocean. With the use of plastic, this problem is getting worse. Because many types of plastic cannot be decomposed, it became a serious threat to fish, seabirds, marine reptiles, marine mammals, as well as ships and coastal settlements. Many deformed growth of marine organisms were caused by the winding of the marine litter, or swallowed garbage, cannot digest and excreted, and leading to the death. Touched me mostly is that in 2015 a turtle was found who had been inserted a plastic straw into the nostril for few years. Most of people who watch the video paid more attention to marine litter because of the turtle. In the first chapter of my work, I used a way of exaggerated performance and empathy, not only satirize the people who arbitrarily discarded garbage into the ocean, but also let the viewers can feel the feelings and pain of the animals by standing on the animals’ perspective.
About excessive slaughter, the most representative is the Taiji dolphin drive hunt in. a bloody "kill dolphins festival" will be held every year in Taiji, started from mid-September of that year, to the March of next year, during the six months, the fishermen of Taiji Bay will slaughter more than twenty thousand dolphins. Even on the top of the cliff, you still can hear the sound of dolphin hunters, and you can feel the struggle of dolphins for freedom and survival. Dolphin hunters leap into the water from the gap of the tarpaulin, and then stab the knife down toward the water. A few minutes later, the green water suddenly turned into a dark red, even the fresh air mingled with the smell of blood. I could not understand why human beings could make killing as a pleasure and set it to one of festival. Whether it is cultural or historical reasons, it cannot become a reason to rationalize the killing. In my work, I used a dolphin doll, and fake blood, visually created that killing dolphins make people's minds become cruel, and will eventually hurt themselves.
About overfishing, I think the most shocking to me is the huge demand for shark fins in East and Southeast Asia. In some Asian countries, eating shark fin is a symbol of luxury, many people just to satisfy their vanity to consume the shark fin. Some ancient Chinese classics recorded shark fin has some health effects and high value to eat. But now, shark fin has been verified, it contains a very common ingredient is not irreplaceable, even eggs and soy bean have the more superior protein than shark fin. Today's consumption of shark fin has almost nothing with nutrition, people always take old thought and vanity to shark fin consumption, resulting in a large number of sharks are slaughtered every year. I hope that through my work to remind the society not to buy shark fin, no trading would be no killing. In the second chapter of my work, I used a shark doll, I cut of the fin, and the fake blood smeared my hands and the knife edge, with the blood of the shark fin on a plate, hoping to make consumers lose appetite to the fin.
About the oil spill, the Gulf of Mexico oil spill on April 20, 2010 let the world shocked. It is estimated that a daily average of 12,000 to 100,000 barrels of crude oil from deep water flow over into the Gulf of Mexico. From between April 20, 2010 to July 15, a total of about 320 million barrels of oil leaked. It resulted in at least 2,500 square kilometers of the sea was covered with oil. The spill contaminated a wide range of the water, many fish, birds, marine life and even plants have been severely affected, such as illness and death. I cannot understand why the mistakes of humans made these innocent animals to suffer the consequences. In my work, I used black ink to represent the oil, I also empathized the animals which were suffering the by effect of oil. I pour the ink on my head, flow into my eyes, nose, and mouth. I deeply feel the kind of pain, it is only water-based, non-toxic ink, if it is oil, it will be very hard to clean I do not even dare to imagine the suffering of those animals.
This work, I named it Self-fish, intended to highlight pun intended. Because of human’s desires, marine environment suffered irreparable damage, and marine animals is the greatest victims. I hope to see the viewers can rethink about the relationship between human beings and marine ecosystems and enhance the awareness of environmental protection.
“BP leak the world's worst accidental oil spill”. The Daily Telegraph (London). 2010.
Grames, Eberhard: “Broken Spirits”, Edition Stemmle. 1995
Harnell, Boyd. "Secret film will show slaughter to the world". Japan Times Online. The Japan Times. 2008.
“Ocean Debris: Habitat for Some, Havoc for Environment”. National Geographic. 2007. Retrieved 2008-08-01.
Sammallahti, Pentti: “Here Far Away”, Dewi Lewis Publishing. First Edition edition 2012