Yang Bin

La table rouge

About this photograph

Yang Bin makes use of the theme of still life that had its heyday in 17th century Dutch painting. Laid out on a table in a cleverly constructed disarray, carefully selected objects such as apples, pomegranates, or flowers are combined with others from the Asian world such as Chinese porcelain or a traditional percussion instrument. Following the paintings of Claesz or Kalf, the objects represented softly stand out against the darkness of the room, owing to a lateral light that catches them and accentuates the diversity of their colours and textures. Like still lifes, which were once designed as symbolic reductions of the earthly world for meditative purposes, Yang Bin?s photographs appear to be similar bearers of hidden meaning. As the various elements in them suggest ? half-eaten fruit, wilting flowers, empty recipients ? it would appear that these photographs perpetuate a subtle reflection on the vanity of existence and the fleeting nature of material pleasures.

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The artist
Yang Bin

After studying the history of art with a focus on classical painting, Yang Bin, then 31 years old, finally launched himself into photography. Success was rapid and works by this Chinese artist, born in Beijing in 1975, already feature in numerous private collections around the world. Now a photographer, the artist is not ready to renounce his theoretical painting background. Yang Bin composes his photographs like a painter constructs paintings and an artist's style transforms his models.

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