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2014.01.10 Fri - 2014.02.16 Sun
Opening Exhibition
01/10/2014 11:00
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Here There Are Men: Patrick Wack’s Portraits of China
[Press Release]

Press release

Art + Shanghai Gallery Presents:

Here There Are Men: Patrick Wack’s Portraits of China

Exhibition Duration: January 10, 2014 to February 16, 2014

Participating Artist: Patrick Wack

Venue: Art+ Shanghai Gallery

Art+ Shanghai Gallery 

Embankment Building

G/F, 370-380 North Suzhou Rd

Tel: (21) 5608 6067

Tuesday to Sunday 11am to 7pm (Closed Monday)



Exhibition Brief:

Among the extremes of China there are wide fields of farmland, treacherous mountains, stark plains, thrown-together cities and cutting-edge cosmopolises. And there are men.

Patrick Wack’s solo exhibition Here There Are Men features twelve of his latest photographic portraits from various locations in China (Chongqing, Inner Mongolia, Tibet and Yunnan). His portraits of everyday men and women in the midst of their daily lives and typical surroundings go beyond the strictly documentary to elevate the subjects into representatives of mankind. Roadside in a steaming concrete menagerie or in a stream nestled between mountains of lush greenery, Wack juxtaposes personae against the changing cultural and environmental landscapes of China, finding beauty in faces, sceneries and light.

With a calm optimism, these portraits of Chinese people capture the commonalities of the human spirit through differences in age, gender, class and location. Resonating with the collective unconscious, Wack’s photographs present subjects as fellow humans rather than individuals from distant lands, as neighbors rather than strangers. Wack achieves his visual aesthetic and narrative style through the combination of natural lighting and an external flash with umbrella, adding a soft sheen to the reportage. Though his work is anchored in reality – real people, real situations – his style incorporates narrative elements, composing the human figure against its environment to recount everyday livelihoods while leaving individual identities a mystery. Capturing and elevating the overlooked, Wack’s style of photography reinvents a sense of truth about the human portrait and the humanity it represents.

Here There Are Men: Patrick Wack’s Portraits of China bridges the distances between the men of China, tapping into the idea of the collective unconscious through Wack’s photographic representations of the heroism of the everyday figure. His images are poised and serene, exuding a sense of Chinese-idealized harmony and equality among mankind. Here there is a fiction borne from reality. Here there are men.

About the Artist:

Born in 1979 in Cannes, France, Patrick Wack is a self-taught photographer based in Shanghai since 2006. Though his educational background is in economics and linguistics, he left the marketing field to pursue an interest and talent in photography. Wack’s work focuses on portraiture and editorial photography, taking snapshots of everyday people in their normal contexts, with a distinctive lighting and narrative style.

Wack has worked with a number of commercial clients including Adidas, Nike, Volkswagen Group, Cartier, Bentley, Hermes, Shangri-La Group, L’Oreal and Suez Environment. He is also active in the field of photojournalism and a member of the renowned German photo agency LAIF and a co-founder of the China-based UBQT collective. He has recently shot features for The Sunday Times and The Sunday Telegraph and has been published on a regular basis in well-known magazines such as Monocle, Tatler, Vogue China and Travel & Leisure.