Putting family in the heart of a picture for posterity

There is a Chinese saying that goes "Be it ever so humble, there is no place like home." And at the "Family@Shanghai" photo exhibition, young snappers try to capture that feeling.
Ye Miaojuan / Ti Gong

The "Sleeping" series by Ye Miaojuan

Ye Miaojuan / Ti Gong

An old Chinese saying goes, “Be it ever so humble, there is no place like home.” And at the 4th Shanghai Young Photographic Art Exhibition, entitled  “Family@Shanghai,” the city's young snappers are trying to capture that feeling.

Organized by the Shanghai Photographers Association, the exhibition at the Shanghai Literature and Art Activity Center features 23 award-winning sets of pictures ─ 226 in total ─ taken by 22 young photographers. 

These photos were chosen by both public votes on WeChat and five experts and veteran photographers. According to the organizing committee, 48,896 public votes have been received.

“People who can write the characters might not be writers, likewise, those who can use a camera might not be photographers,” said Chang He, one of the jury members of the competition. “For a writer, his ability is to organize the words to tell a touching story, while for a photographer, his ability lies in his use of pictures to express his own aesthetic taste. 

“Today, people can use smartphones or apps to beautify a person in the lens. But photography is not just about how to shoot a person in his/her uttermost beauty.”

Perhaps the pictures on display at the exhibition will show how far photography can go. For example, the black-and-white “Sleeping” series, captured by Ye Miaojuan, focuses on the local hospital scene at midnight. 

Ye’s works show sons and daughters accompanying their parents by the sickbeds. Different sleeping postures were captured ─ some on the floor, some on a bench ─ unwittingly revealing the deep love from the family members.

“What is family? In my eyes, home is where the family members stay, even at hospital,” said Ye. “We are fast entering a gray society, and there will be many such moments among sons and daughters in the future. Filial piety is what I want to reflect through these pictures.”

“Love of Shanghai,” captured by Yang Qing, displays a warm atmosphere through a bowl of congee. In a fast-paced metropolis, a bowl of porridge left on the table or a child sleeping on the sofa waiting for the parents might be a perfect compensation to an exhausted day of hard work.

Exhibition details

Date: Through December 3, 9am-5pm

Venue: Shanghai Literature and Art Activity Center

Address: 200 Yan’an Rd W.

Yang Qing / Ti Gong

Yang Qing's "Love of Shanghai"

Ti Gong
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