Saturday, September 6, 2014

China gets first taste of fine art photos (audio)

CC Liu, Amber Larson, Seth Auberon, Wisdom Quarterly;; Frank Langfitt (
Buddha head in middle of an open pit coal mine in Ningxia province, China (Zhang Kechun)
China's Yellow River is big, very big. Nevertheless, according to photographer Zhang Kechun:
"It is a river! No matter if it meanders or goes forward straight; if it’s swelling or dry; if it flows rapidly or slowly; if it’s lively or tranquil; if it’s majestic or elegant; if it’s simple or magnificent; if it possesses brightness or dark; if it’s colorful or gloomy; if it’s only an imagination and reality, it always embraces people’s life and fate, joy and sorrow, faith and hesitance."

"Mother River," Huang He, Egypto-Chinese
The Yellow River (Huang He) is the third-longest river in Asia, following the Yangtze River and Yenisei River, and the sixth-longest in the world at the estimated length of 3,395 miles (5,464 km). More
(NPR) China's largest fair devoted to fine art photography opened in Shanghai this weekend. The first-time event is called Photo Shanghai and includes more than 500 works from photographers around the world.

One of the exhibits drawing a lot of Chinese visitors this weekend is by photographer Zhang Kechun. One of the most striking images features a Buddha head, about 40 feet high, sitting in the middle of an open pit coal mine

"I feel the Buddha is someone that people revere," says Ji Hexiang, a nurse who's visiting the exhibit and trying to interpret the image. "The Buddha head may be there to bless and protect coal miners, to keep them safe and sound. On the other hand, these coal mine bosses pursue their own interests regardless of the costs."

Zhang [Kechun], the photographer, suggests Ji is on to something. Generally, coal mine barons are reviled in China. Many are seen as corrupt and greedy, often risking the safety of their workers and degrading the environment. Zhang says the coal mine owner actually became a monk and built a temple. More + AUDIO
Compressed digital panorama of Istanbul, Turkey (Murat Germen/C.A.M. Gallery/BBC)

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