The meaning of the objects and scenes featured in Feng Yan’s photography is not confined to the distance and focal point he sets. His works appear “candid” and “straightforward” on the surface, but underneath it there lies an invisible sense of “profundity” as the artist attempts to present “visibility” from a more macroscopic perspective. With a focus on details, Feng Yan’s work often goes beyond and imbues freshness into the values and causal relationships that are familiar to people and have been taken for granted. What he manages to convey is a picture that is more holistic of the world. In other words, the message he presents by means of photography is of more universal relevance compared to that seen from a conventional angle. In photography like this, Feng Yan’s vision seems to have been transformed into numerous probes, and instead of focusing on one thing, they probe into every direction within the space in a parallel and undifferentiated manner.

Rather than highlighting the probes that target at common experience of the viewers, he endeavors to bring the probes as a whole into full play. As a result, the world, in a sense, is presented as it is, not subject to the preferences or choices of anyone. All in all, the ingenious capacity that his works demonstrate to lead viewers into the truth seeming to have fallen into oblivion or been intentionally shielded, as well as the succinctness and flexibility featured when he shifts between different themes and scenes should be ascribed to his rich life experience, proficiency at self-introspection in a visual way, profound reading and writing practice and insightful perception of life and the world.

About the exhibition

Dates: 2016.09.09 Fri – 2016.10.09 Sun

Venue: Shanghai Gallery of Art

Courtesy of the artist and Shanghai Gallery of Art, for further information please visit

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