Village of Oblivion 遗落之村


Over the past five years, I have been living in Guangzhou. As a result of reform and opening up, Guangzhou has become one of China's most modern cities, as well as one of the most representative cities for the phenomenon of “Urban Villages”. According to the official definition, an urban village is a residential region that lags behind the pace of urban development and has a low standard of living amid fast urban expansion. And these villages seem to be gradually marginalized and oblivious in urbanization. Old buildings in urban villages are significant symbols of the urban village phenomenon. In order to spotlight and visualize those villages of oblivion, I started capturing aging buildings and urbanization signs in urban towns, such as abandoned water towers, ancient industries, and incomplete buildings, as well as concrete surfaces, demolished glass, steel patterns, and smoke exhaled from chemical companies. By composing, overlaying, and blending those photographic images, I attempt to create landscapes floating in a surreal dimension, representing Guangzhou's urban village phenomena in an artistic vision. In such a particular way, the accidental "interaction" between the aging architecture, construction materials, and the natural ecology forms a delicate symbiosis, revealing the true vitality of the city‘s development.

“Rapid urbanization in China lasted for more than ten years, new town and new area construction enlarged the framework of the city and region. Meanwhile, China's huge regional differences in the development of the city update problem are very complex. ”

Chen Yi: Study on Spatial Governance of Urban Renewal in China, Nanjing University, 2016.