Early in my schooling, after 18 years of basic painting and drawing and 1 year of graphic design at Tsinghua university, Beijing, China; I made a decision to change my major to photography and study abroad at the San Francisco Art Institute.
My photography explores documentary imagery and commercial fashion. People always wonder and care about other people’s life, which are my same thoughts.
For my first long-term story, I started from my familiar object, hip-hop dance that is also one of my hobbies. I spent half a year documenting San Francisco’s local hip-hop dancers. This project led and trained me in the world of documentary photography. After that, I spent a year documenting Jin, a transgender boy and his mental and physical transition in order to share with other people who might be feeling confused about their genders and suffering from this pressure.
To take each photo of Jin is to present and support them to people and appreciate his life. By facing hormone injections alongside Jin, disease and gender are becoming important themes in my present work. I started to focus on my father’s nephritis disease and made a series of photographs depicting him. Though this series of photos, I got a chance to sit down with him, take care, listen to his life and get close to him, which is also the reason why I started this project. Photography draws a line of connection between me and the people around me.
My commercial fashion photography let me pick up skills in design software to create imaginative backgrounds for my images. When I realized I couldn’t give up my past experience and knowledge of graphic design, I made the choice to make design and technology my minor at SFAI.
The same desire to study and use the skills of design and technology created the team Over Zero. The first project was a public multimedia and environmental art piece named Ember on Market Street. The Ember is significant not only to establish a new conversation of social contact, but also to bring the long-unseen nature back to this busy city. For this project, my duty was to design a team logo and visual proposal.
For me, public art allows more people to participate and feel the connection between art and life. The Ember does exactly this. Everyone has the capability of appreciating the beauty of the piece, and the ability to become artists themselves.
While I put the skills of photography and design together, I found out my specific and personal way to represent and state this world and my ideal of this world. These experiences have set a direction for my art career.
2012 San Francisco Art Institute, Bachelor of Fine Arts
Photography major, Design and Technology minor
2011 Tsinghua University of Art and Design, Bachelor of Graphic Design
2016 Paul Sack Gallery, San Francisco, CA, Jan
2015 DIS, San Francisco, CA, Sep
2015 DIS, San Francisco, CA, June
2016 Diego Rivera Gallery, San Francisco, CA, March
2015 Good mother gallery, San Francisco, CA, Oct
2015 The 2014 EyeEm London Festival & Awards Show, London, UK, July
2015 The 2015 Market street typography installation competition, San Francisco, CA, June
2014 The 2014 EyeEm Festival & Awards Show, Alt-Stralau 4, Berlin, Germany, Sep
2014 Uncontaminated Bodies, Goody Café, San Francisco, CA, Oct
2013 “Creative An Non-fiction”, San Francisco Art Institute’s Café, San Francisco, United States, April
2013 Jongdal Kim’s Show, 3084 El Camino Real, Santa Clara, United States, July
2012 Still Life Gallery, San Francisco Art Institute, San Francisco, United States, April
2016 The Week On EyeEm’s Blog 8, Germany, Feb
2015 The Eighth Art Exposition/ Symposium of Phenomenology of Art and Life contest finalists, Beijing, China, Sep
2015 Market Street Prototyping Festival, San Francisco, June
2014 The Week On EyeEm’s Blog 36, Germany, Sep
2014 The 2014 EyeEm Festival & Awards 100 Finalists of photographer, Germany, Sep