Guanyi Ming // China
Guan Yiming is a Chinese artist and photographer based in Shanghai. He is most renowned for his work in photographic portrait, and also produces experimental photography. His portraiture generates historic moments through the capture of people fossilized in a moment, place, and mood. He is active in a number of Chinese photographer associations and exacts his work in a social context. Guan maps individual experience as drives, and also presents evidence of, the social topography of a place within the passage of culture and time. His portraits are intimate – phenomenally close and candid. They are meticulously recorded – the printing of his work uses classical photographic methodology. The normally black-and-white images, framed presence of a longer sheet, do not obscure the maker’s mark. Each piece is also given due nomenclature, date, place, etc. The individual focus is a reminder of the populist origins of societal trends that can feel outside of each person individually. Active since the late 1980s, Guan’s work has always fit into a historic discourse. In his experimental work, he plays with narrowed palettes of color, creating detailed images. This work contrives an image as the ratio of focus and focal neglect, created stills of rushing, or embattled, movement. The artist’s work is premediated and he creates it in the interest of posterity. His technique is one of committed storytelling. He seeks the production of a natural, candid image produced without affect in person or production. That way, the messenger’s import in a social discussion is most directly attributed through his portraits. In the extended practice of his photography, Guan creates landscape that captures change over time, rather the representation of crystallized scene.