Venue: Blindspot Gallery (Central)
223 (a.k.a Lin Zhi Peng) and Ren Hang both utilize the photographic medium as an essential means to express individualism and existential concerns. By portraying their own generation in modern day China, their images reflect the spontaneous and random living conditions in the subculture. Their images blur the boundaries between private and public by displaying their own intimate lives and close acquaintances, showcasing different aspects from drug and alcohol consumption, sex, homosexuality to bodily media.
Despite their visual similarities, works of 223 and Ren Hang are constructed very differently. 223’s snapshot aesthetic spontaneously documents his subjects in the everyday, offering clues to his own lifestyle choices. In contrast to 223, Ren Hang’s carefully constructed staged photography (in some cases pretending to be snapshot) is more ambiguous with the subject devoid of any sense of self. At times the work is exploitative and highly fetishistic, provoking an immediate emotional response; at other times it is abstract and minimalistic, inviting a quiet contemplation.