Artist: Li Lang
Publisher: La Maison de Z
– Book Size: 10 x 15 cm
– Pages: 760 pages
– Binding: Swiss binding, hard cover with silver & golden hot press
– Print: Offset print (main book)
Offset single silver print on color paper (booklet)
– Publication Year: 2020
– Language: English, Chinese
– Limited Edition: 500
– ISBN: 978-2-9564071-5-7
Everyone has a unique starting point in their own memory. For Li Lang, it all started in 1974. His work 1974 consists of 390 slides playing in a loop, accompanied by the artist’s voice-over of 4 stories extracted from his memory of 1974, a summary of the important events of that year, and vignettes of the voice-over on the site.
As an artist who mainly works with photography, Li Lang has inserted his observations on history and images in the fuzzy zone between reality and fiction, as well as his reflections on the contradictions and conflicts between them. The slides in 1974 come from vintage photographs that he collected over the years from different sources, such as studio portraits, travel photos, or snapshots of work and everyday life scenes. After putting them into different categories, Li hand-labeled them with dates based on a fictional timeline. Thus, these vintage photographs are removed from their original context and become his memory metaphors which are later framed into his own narration.
Li Lang’s work reconstructs what he imagines to be the starting point in his memory through voice-over and vintage photos. Images and texts are no longer just traces of the past. They also explore the potential dialogue with reality in the gap between light and shadow. Li never asks the audience to accept his narrative of history. Instead, he invites us to join him as an explorer of the past.
About Li Lang
Li Lang (b.1969) is a visual artist and currently lives and works in Chengdu, China. Beginning his photographic career in the 1990s, Li was awarded The Special Jury Prize by Lianzhou Foto Festival in 2015 with Father and the Mother Jones Medal of Excellence in 1999 with The Yi People. Li’s work has been widely exhibited in China and abroad. His work is part of several collections around the world, most notably the Art Gallery of Ontario, the A4 Art Museum, Guangdong Museum of Art and Shanghai Art Museum, the Instituto Valenciano de Arte Moderno (Valencia) and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
Li has often experimented with a deliberately subjective approach in his documentary, as it highlights the photographer’s perspective of the subject or the visual language at play.
About La Maison de Z
La Maison de Z is an on-going project focusing on Chinese contemporary photography and independent publications. Using publishing as a way of research which explores the intricate relationship between realities and memories, La Maison de Z was founded by French-Chinese artist Zhen Shi in 2015 and starts to publish their own editions in 2018, the project allows a growing audience to discover the most recent works of emerging Chinese artists.
More information: www.lamaisondez.com