Yan Ming










Land of Bygone

Yan Ming’s Photography


Curator: Hua Er


A picture is only a moment and several pictures can display different moments in the same time which is still one-sided. But when Yan Ming takes photos of different people and scenery in different time, they are likely to constitute a multi-dimensional reality.

Yan Ming’s works always focus on the division between eccentricity and reality without deliberate criticism and sarcasm. He stands in a distant position and photographs new scenery of long-standing landscapes in a subtle way, thus presenting a humorous and emotional understanding to viewers. As Xu Lei who is an artist said, “There are many noticeable things in Yan’s works of which the most important thing is his emotion. Chinese people share an emotion towards beautiful scenery and familiar friends through dynasties from Li Bai to Liu Yuxi. He inherits this emotion with an ever-lasting journey.” Poems are always existent in his works and every poem is filled with his imagination and emotions. “In fact, he doesn’t capture these poetic feelings but creates them. Without such emotions, literacy, art and visual training, and real emotional movements like his, you’re indifferent to any scenery when you come across it. Therefore, his works are not to record or capture, but to create in a profound manner.” , said Jia Zhangke.

Yan Ming is gentle and soft man, and he always keeps smiling which seems more interesting than guffaw. His works carry a characteristic of author’s photography. When people are curious why they are so special, he, a young boy from a town in Anhui, uses his lasting sincerity, sensitivity, warmth, romanticism, humor, calmness and optimism and displays his unique genetic feature. The interesting thing is that this gene will spread others. A modern poet called Eliot ever said, “As long as a new masterpiece is created, past classics will be shocked.” Yan Ming ever minds telling people his secret to good photos: “I feel excited when natural and non-natural elements are suddenly integrated like the name of Yesterday’s Paradise and photos in this book. These places, geographical scenery and cities are not only previous dust of the world, but a Land of Bygone of mine.