New and Emerging Photographers
Chinese artists Ji Weiyu (born 1980) and Son Tao (born 1979) have been exhibiting under the name Birdhead since 2004 but they began to present their work outside China only in the recent years. Weiyu and Tao, both of which graduated from the Shanghai Arts and Crafts School currently live and work in Shanghai, focusing on seemingly casual daily life in the city of Shanghai. However, their work reveals a major shift from both the traditional Chinese art and contemporary photography. Just like the city they live and work in, their photographs reveal the transition China is going through in both social and cultural aspect. But at the same time, their photographs also reflect a high level of intimacy, offering a unique insight into both the artists’ concepts and their subjects.
Represented by the ShanghArt Gallery, Weiyu and Tao are exhibiting their photographs all over the world; they also took part of the central exhibition at the 2011 Venice Biennale and were included into the MoMA’s New Photography 2012 exhibition that was held from October 3, 2012 to February 4, 2013.
The American photographer began his career as architectural photographer with his photos used in a range of presents across the world. He soon started to work for renowned architectural firms and magazines but according to the artist, he soon realised that he wants to photograph people. Considering that he gained recognition for architectural photography and that architectural firms and magazines account for the majority of his client base, his interest in portraiture didn’t appear a good idea. However, he has managed to merge portraiture and architectural photography, and develop a distinct style which earned him a status of one of the most exciting emerging photographers. Cole has also won a number of awards and accolades and was most recently included into PDN’s 30 Emerging Photographers to Watch in 2013. He was also chosen for the American Photography 28.
The Russian photographer started her artistic career relatively late. The former accountant and Web designer turned to photography only in 2008, however, her black-and-white images of marginal groups and subjects in Russia ranging from alcoholism in the region of Saratov, steam baths in Pskov, Yamal Peninsula herders, etc. soon attracted a lot of attention in her native country and her photographs were included in some of the most prestigious magazines including Autoportret, Russian Reporter and Courrier Japon. In the recent year, however, the photographer is also building a major international reputation and was chosen as one of PDN’s 30 Emerging Photographers to Watch in 2013.