| YAO LU
Chinese, b. 1967
Yao Lu is the fifth winner of a major international award the 2008 BMW-Paris Photo Prize for contemporary photography, after Czech artist Jitka Hanzlova in 2007, French artist Mathieu Bernard-Reymond in 2006, American artist Anthony Goicolea in 2005 and the Switzerland's Jules Spinatsch in 2004. Yao Lu is an emerging Chinese artist and teacher at the photography department of the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing. His work has been shown in numerous festivals and collective exhibitions around China (Lianzhou International Photo Festival 2007, New China Occidentalism – China Contemporary Art in Beijing in 2006, Pingyao International Photography Festival in 2004). His work has rarely been shown in the West, except at the Fotofest International Houston in 2008, and at the "Space and Transportation" exhibition in Graz, Austria, in 1997. The winning work "Yao Lu's Landscape Part I – Ancient Spring Time Fey, 2006" is part of a series of digitally manipulated images of landscapes. The artist photographs mounds of garbage covered in green protective nets which he assembles and reworks by computer to create bucolic images of mountain landscapes shrouded in the mist inspired by traditional Chinese paintings. Lying somewhere between painting and photography, between the past and the present, Yao Lu's work speaks of the radical mutations affecting nature in China as it is subjected to rampant urbanization and the ecological threats that endanger the environment.