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PHOTOFAIRS Shanghai – Exposure Award 2020 Winner is Guanyu Xu

PHOTOFAIRS announce an exhibition of works by US based Chinese artist Guanyu Xu (Gaotai Gallery, Urumqi), this year’s recipient of the Exposure Award powered by MODERN EYE. Exhibited alongside it in the Modern Studio space is the work of runner-up Sameer Twade (UP Gallery, Taipei).  A digital presentation by a selection of artists that submitted to this year’s Exposure Award is available from 11 September via photofairs.org.

In support and acknowledgement of the challenges faced by the artistic community this year, the 2020 edition of the Award includes an extended presentation of artists coinciding with a weekend of photography exhibitions and events in Shanghai. 

Launched in 2019 the Award provides a complimentary exhibition platform to any gallery with a solo presentation of experimental work by an artist pushing the boundaries of photography. Titled Temporarily Censored Home Xu’s work features photographs of his parent’s home in Beijing covered in intricately layered photographic collages. Secretly installed and taken down each day while his parents were out of the house, these collages reflect parts of Xu’s identity unknown to his family and comprise family pictures, adverts and portraits of the artist with other gay men. Through these temporary installations Xu reclaims the conservative home he grew up in as a queer space of rebellion and freedom.

The judging panel for the Exposure Award 2020 includes: Cao Dan, President of MODERN ART and Publisher of The Art Newspaper China and LEAP; Sunyoung Kim, Curator of The Museum of Photography Seoul, South Korea; Gwen Lee, Co-founder and Director, Singapore Photography Festival and Director, DECK, Singapore and; Lu Ni, Executive Director, Xie Zilong Photography Museum (XPM) and Secretary General, Alliance of Chinese Photography Museums.

Discussing the work of Guanyu Xu the judging panel commented: Every artist has a “point of origin” for their work, be it experiential, psychological or even subconscious. It is impressive to discover how artists communicate these personal narratives with a creative visual language in unpredictable ways. In Guanyu Xu’s worka large number of images and physical spaces are juxtaposed, interspersed and nested to form a series of sophisticated and complex installation of photographs that collapse the boundaries between time, space, and dimensions. His focus on the conflicts between individuals, family and society raises questions not only around identity and gender but also about

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