Duration: May 16th – July12th, 2020, 10:00-18:00, Closed on Monday
Winners Announcement: July, 2020 (To Be Determined)
Art Directors: RongRong&inri
Project Executive: Yan Qi
Organizer: Three Shadows Photography Art Centre
Friendly Supporter: Chengdu Contemporary Image Museum
Supporters: Zhejiang Photography Publishing, French Embassy in China, Japan Foundation Beijing
Sophie Makariou, Present of Musée national des Arts asiatiques-Guimet
Yasufumi Nakamori, Senior Curator of International Art (Photography) at the Tate Modern
Fei Dawei, Critic and Curator
Zheng Wen, Deputy Director of the Art Museum of the Nanjing University of the Arts
RongRong&inri, Co-Founders of Three Shadows Photography Art Centre
2020 TSPA finalists (Alphabetically):
Bai Shan, Chi Lei, Di Jinjun, Guo Beihua, Joy Island, Jiang Chuan, Jin Jing, Liu Chuanli, Wang Chunshuai, Wang Xuehan, Wu Mengyuan, Wu Zhaochen, Xu Feng, Yang Guohua, Yu Jiayue, Zhang Beichen, Zhao Zhi, Zhou Qiang, Zhou Yijun, Zhu Xiuren.
Our annual Three Shadows Photography Award (TSPA) exhibition has traditionally opened alongside the season’s cherry blossoms, but this year found us forced to push back the ceremony. This spring has proceeded in a way no one could have anticipated, with a public health crisis that has interrupted the daily rhythms of countless people and upended even the smallest facets of life. The global spread of the coronavirus has ground societies to a halt and spared no one from its effects. As social events began to cease, online interactions began to accelerate, and the significance of individual actions for the collective has increased – this virus has shown us that the scale and rapidity of modern life can amplify seemingly minor choices, giving them greater energy and influence. In such an environment, we cannot help but reconsider the role that individuals play in a globalized system.
In this year’s TSPA exhibition, Guo Beihua’s A Salted Land shows the lamentable changes in California’s Salton Sea – once a popular holiday destination, it became a victim of environmental mismanagement and sits like a ghost of its former self. Wang Chunshuai’s Heiqiao Village is a record of life in a seemingly nondescript village on the northeast edge of Beijing’s Fifth Ring Road, a place where individuals came together before scattering again with the passage of time. Jin Jing’s Eternal Future adopts the perspective of a skeptic and regards everyday environments with a subtle, transient intuition, inspiring us to question the true nature of the world we live in.
Meanwhile, created in the confines of a video game, Wang Xuehan’s D in WASD series simulates the real world, probing the boundaries of a world we cannot touch and sharing the results of a number of experiments where the individual was made into both a virtual follower and rule maker. In Chi Lei’s Techniques for Reaching the Sky, the focus is even grander: images of individuals taken in the physical world become completely symbolic, transformed into “stars” through an app.
As the world around us has become increasingly difficult to understand, explorations of the self and the world have become ever more entangled with our doubts. Fortunately, these challenging times have not eroded the ideas of individual artists. This year, Three Shadows received 555 submissions for the TSPA. Our committee, working alongside preliminary juror Zheng Wen (Deputy Director of the Art Museum of the Nanjing University of the Arts), winnowed this number down to 20 artists to show in the 12th TSPA exhibition.
For each edition of the TSPA, we’ve been proud to assemble a diverse, international jury of curators and experts. They have provided powerful scholarly support for Three Shadows’ long-standing project to unearth new talent in photography. At a time of global disruption in the art industry, Three Shadows is honored to bring together Sophie Makariou, Musée national des Arts asiatiques-Guimet; Yasufami Nakamori, Senior Curator of International Art (Photography) at the Tate Modern; Fei Dawei, Critic and Curator; Zheng Wen, Deputy Director of the Art Museum of the Nanjing University of the Arts; and RongRong&inri, co-founders of Three Shadows. Together, these individuals compose the jury of the 12th TSPA.
Due to the suspension of international travel, interviews and selections for the top TSPA prize will be conducted following the opening. The Luo Bonian Award, supported by Luo Bonian’s family and +3 Gallery, will be announced during the course of the exhibition, as will the Media Award, which is decided upon by a group of media professionals.
We would like to sincerely thank the Chengdu Contemporary Image Museum, the Zhejiang Photography Publishing, the French Embassy in China, the Japan Foundation Beijing and all the exhibited artists for their immense support of the TSPA.
We look forward to bringing the Three Shadows Photography Award Exhibition to our visitors and connecting individuals once more through the resonance of this art. We look forward to the true arrival of spring for everyone.