GUY LE QUERREC
THE CHINESE GESTURE
CURATED BY JEAN LOH
A Breton born in Paris in 1941 and a Magnum veteran for the past 42 years, Guy Le Querrec has three loves in his life—photography, his hometown and jazz. Photography is without doubt his greatest passion.
Guy Le Querrec’s most unexpected journey was to China, a voyage East accomplished in four periods (1984, 1986, 1988 and 1989). It was in 1988, when Guy Le Querrec gave a Master Class in China at the invitation of Rencontres d’Arles, that he discovered the Hui’an Maidens in Fujian Province. In 1989, he was invited to participate in the project "A Day in the Life of China". He was the only one of sixty foreign photographers to select Fujian, and he did so in order to spend more time with the extraordinary Hui'an Maidens. They are the mainstay of the exhibition, "The Chinese Gesture". In China today, people have forgotten all about the Hui'an Maidens, how they did everything while their fishermen sailed away.
The exhibition shows Guy Le Querrec's unique perspective on a transitioning China, in 70 shots of large cities (Beijing, Wuhan, Shanghai Suzhou, Nanjing, Guangzhou, Chengdu, Chongqing, Xiamen, Quanzhou) and the countryside of Fujian province.
Guy Le Querrec, Bao Guang Temple, Xindu (Sichuan), 27 April 1984. Courtesy of the artist / Magnum
Guy Le Querrec, Funeral Brass Band in Xiangqiang Village (Fujian), April 1989. Courtesy of the artist / Magnum
Guy Le Querrec, Hui’an women working in quarry n° 603, Friday 14 April 1989. Courtesy of the artist / Magnum
Guy Le Querrec, Morning stretching on the Bund, Shanghai, 13 May 1984. Courtesy of the artist / Magnum
Guy Le Querrec, Taiji and Qigong moves, Qianmen - Yong An lu (Beijing), 9 November 1988. Courtesy of the artist / Magnum