CULTURE New materials invigorate old-school imagery


New materials invigorate old-school imagery

20:50, April 17, 2019

A photographic exhibition at the Image Group Art Gallery features works by Zhang Yongjiang, Zhuo Fumin, Zhang Yue, Cheng Anli, Han Wei and Wang Hua, all die-hard fans of old-fashioned analogue photography.


Han Wei’s “Time and Space” (Photos:

All works on display are the result of a six-month exploration and attempts by the six to explore the possibilities to develop black-and-white pictures on various materials instead of traditional photographic paper.

They coated materials such as bronze, ceramics, bricks, rice paper and old newspapers with silver halides to interpret what they wanted to express in their one-off handmade prints.

Han Wei’s “Time and Space” shows an old wall of the imperial palace. It has been printed on a block of six old bricks.

Zhuo Fumin chooses rice paper as the substrate for his landscape of trees and water. Initially printed in monochrome, the image is afterward colored using traditional Chinese ink painting techniques.

Zhang Yue’s “Poster Era” captures a street corner, showing shop windows with hanging plastic models inside. It has been printed on a piece of metal, which gives the work an extra touch of modernity.


Zhang Yue’s “Poster Era”

Wang Hua’s “Days of Print Media” is a simple snapshot of a crowded Shanghai street in the 1990s, but has been printed on an old copy of Jiefang Daily, giving a dimension that the image alone could not achieve.

“It’s a return of the era of traditional silver and salt photography, which has been greatly affected by digital photography,” said Gu Zheng from Fudan University.

“The different materials bring out more details and quality, which bring out a power in the pictures which might otherwise go unnoticed.”


Wang Hua’s “Days of Print Media”


Exhibition Info

Date: Through April 21, 10:30am-8pm

Venue: Image Group Art Gallery

Address: 2/F, 300 Anfu Rd

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