Artist Residency in Laohegou Nature Reserve

Beijing Contemporary Art Foundation

In 2018, Beijing Contemporary Art Foundation and the Taohuayuan Ecological Protection Foundation jointly launched China's first international art residency program based on a nature reserve: "create co-existence @laohegou nature reserve in Sichuan”.

Watch-over (2018/2018) by Cong MingBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

create co-existence @laohegou nature reserve in Sichuan

Different from the traditional art residency in cities, laohegou residency is an international art residency based on nature reserve.

Laohegou nature reserveBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

Laohegou is the first social welfare nature reserve in China. For animal lovers, the Laohegou Nature Reserve is an absolute must, spanning Sichuan’s Pingwu County and featuring the famous snub-nosed monkey, Asian cats, as well as other exciting and rare animals. Conservation projects are in full swing in Laohegou, promoting forest-friendly livelihoods and eco-friendly agriculture. Laohegou also has the highest density of wild pandas in the world.

Laohegou nature reserveBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

Villages in Laohegou nature reserve

Laohegou nature reserveBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

Service station in Laohegou nature reserve

create co-existence @laohegou nature reserve in Sichuan, BCAF, From the collection of: Beijing Contemporary Art Foundation
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Aiming to discover and support the mission of young artists, BCAF international art residency invited young artists from all over the world to experience China's diverse nature, humanities, and live in the community and think about environmental issues related to art creation. For the artists, it provided a new platform for cultural collisions and social discussions, opportunities, creative expression, and produced a long-term contribution to the local community.

Artists Participated in Laohegou Art Residency (2015) by BCAFBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

The well-known artists Song Dong, Zeng Fanzhi and Zeng Li were invited as jurors to select project residents from applicants. After careful consideration, the first three artists attend Laohegou art residency were Xu Jun, Yu Tao, Cong Ming (From left to right).

Photograph by Xu Jun I (2018) by Xu JunBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

Xu Jun: Where human life is closest to nature

"From April to September, from spring to autumn, Laohegou at this time should turn into a new look. How its current beauty would look like?"

Xu JunBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

Xu Jun was born in 1976 and began to take photography in 1998. He used to be a photojournalist for magazine and an editor of photography and international fashion column. He received 2008 Canon award for documentary portrait photography. He was Chief Photojournalist of Morning News Weekly of Hunan Xiaoxiang Morning News Group, mainly responsible for magazine fashion covers and news documentary pictures. He worked for Modern Media from October 2011 to February 2013, and a freelance photographer after 2014.

Photograph by Xu Jun II (2018) by Xu JunBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

Photograph by Xu Jun

Photograph by Xu Jun V (2018) by Xu JunBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

Photograph by Xu Jun

Photograph by Xu Jun III (2018) by Xu JunBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

Photograph by Xu Jun

Photograph by Xu Jun VI (2018) by Xu JunBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

Photograph by Xu Jun

The Sound of Water by Yu TaoBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

Yu Tao: Nature brings a new sense of time and space

"In Laohegou, I often sit on a bench in the courtyard facing the mountains and the trees to read, and occasionally breathe out, as if reading a book, nature is healing something over time. When I am open to nature , I begin to experience a new life as if I have regained consciousness. Those common knowledge and rigid order loosen, dead borders with the outside world disappear, and the vitality of the surrounding things reappear. I open my illusion of time, and at the same time I get a sense of fun as if I could spy on the gaps in time. "

Yu TaoBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

Yu Tao was born in Sichuan, China in 1992 and currently lives and works in Beijing. Most of her works are painted on wooden boards, and also combined with photography, printmaking and other creative forms. Yu Tao focuses on the state of mind that is from the natural landscape phenomenon. Her recent works have turned to exploring the inner experience at the level of spiritual perception, fascinated by visualizing some of the "separate" abstract consciousness, and visualizing the essence of the real body.

Pause to Wonder (2018/2018) by Yu TaoBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

"Just as D.T.Suzuki said about beauty, 'Flowers are red as flowers, and yellow and leaves are green as leaves', and 'Unknown, mysterious abyss'. It is difficult to change the angle to re-experience what is already familiar. This is always accompanied by a time-regulated meaning, as if tomorrow that are always being prepared are 'permanent yesterday'."

Water (2018/2018) by Yu TaoBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

"Is time the most important thing that nature can bring? Or is it the spatial experience brought about by time changes? In nature, in the unconscious presentation of the universe, the most important thing they can bring is a powerful influence, guiding you to experience the most wonderful treasure in the world that you already have--life."

Smoke (2018/2018) by Cong MingBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

Cong Ming: The hidden animals

During his stay in Laohegou, Cong Ming used film to record his feelings, and used the sand in Laohegou to create his initial sketches, and then completed the landscape in his memory with oil painting and amber. The final works have subtle connections with animals.

Cong MingBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

Cong Ming was born in Dalian, China in May 1989. He graduated from the Oil Painting Department of Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts in 2012 and graduated from the Central Academy of Fine Arts Comprehensive Materials Painting Advanced Course in 2014. Afterwards, he attended the Advanced training class for talents in 2017. He is deaf due to illness when he was young. As a determined person, with support from his father, Cong has been studying his own painting methods and artistic language since 2009.

Laohegou Oil Painting by Cong MingBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

"I have lived in Laohegou for a month. Embracing the nature, pain and grief gradually have become inner peace. Walking in the dense forest is a process of unloading the psychological burden, returning to the original, and returning to the true self. Everything is simple. "

Oil painting by Cong Ming

Laohegou Oil Painting series VII by Cong MingBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

"So I use simple colors and pictures to depict the scenery of Laohegou. During my stay in Laohegou, I occasionally encounter wild animals. They are hidden in the forest in the distance and are not easy to be found. We don’t disturb each other, and the pure and natural ecological environment leave a deep impression on me.”

Oil painting by Cong Ming

Laohegou Oil Painting Series II by Cong MingBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

Man and nature are symbiotic relationship. Only by Respecting nature, adapting to nature and then transforming and using nature can we truly achieve a harmonious symbiotic relationship between man and nature.

Oil painting by Cong Ming

Amber series by Cong Ming (2018/2018) by Cong MingBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

"Amber comes from the resin buried in the ground tens of millions of years ago. It requires a large-scale crustal movement and the resin of coniferous trees in the original forest to drip and interact. It is a resin fossil formed after certain chemical changes. Amber uses its own records of historical changes and preserves extinct insects and plants. I made some amber, put the insect specimens provided by the staff into the amber. The purpose is to alert people to protect the environment and not let today's common animals and endangered animals become extinct, so that children in the future can only use amber to learn about insects that should be common but extinct.”

Distant Village (2018/2018) by Cong MingBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

“I use film to record the sunlight, sky, woods, rivers, rocks, patrols, etc. The calm picture of nature contains power. The momentum behind the calmness is full of the infinite vitality of nature, and the guardian guards the spirit silently.”

Distant village by Cong Ming

Outside the Window (2018/2018) by Cong MingBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

Outside The Window by Cong Ming

Protection (2018/2018) by Cong MingBeijing Contemporary Art Foundation

Guard by Cong Ming

Credits: All media
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