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  • Something has shifted. Something between The East and The West. There’s a New Frontier and there’s a New Citizenship. L.A Tokyo Moscow London Shanghai Bucharest Bangkok Milan NewYorkCity Seoul Paris Zurich Madrid Berlin Beijing. Aserican are from Everywhere. Aserica. It's Asia - America - and the Whole World in between.

    ASERICAN

    Wang YiShu

    Yishu Wang is a photographer who travels and takes photos of his lived reality in the changing social and cultural landscape of China. His photography helps him make sense of the world, and look at uncomfortable scenes with a different perspective. Bending reality to fit what he sees.
    Photography by Wang YiShu, Interview by Isa Prieto.

    IP: Where do you live?

    WYS: I live in Wuzhen, Zhejiang, and I am closer to Shanghai. I was born in Gansu and lived in Guangzhou for more than ten years.

    IP: How did you start taking pictures?

    WYS: I went to college and started to like photography. I have been a photojournalist for more than ten years, but I like photography as an art since college. Art photography is really interesting to me.

    IP: How do you define your photography?

    WYS: My photography is my watch. My work is self-centered and record my views on the world. I pay more attention to the unclear, abstract part of the real world, not just the recorded reality.

    IP: How does travel affect your work?

    WYS: Travel is a reason for my photography, but it is not the result. I have been to many places, but I don't care if personal works record these places exactly, or even deliberately avoid the tourist landscape. I kept taking pictures when I was not traveling.

    IP: Some of your images will give you a sense of alienation or discomfort. Why are you attracted to this theme, how did you achieve it?

    WYS: I think there will be a lot of uncomfortable places in the real world. I just point them out, but sometimes the image itself is a kind of fabrication, and photography is not the same as reality.

    IP: Your series Return seems to be most concerned with individuals. What attracted you to the attention to the topic in your photo?

    WYS: Yes, I was young at the time of the early works, and I had a lot of specific views on the world, and I had direct observations about people. At that time I liked the writer Kafka, he was great.

    IP: In No borders there are no obvious visual motifs. How did you combine them as a series?
    WYS: Now I take pictures more relaxed. I think my perspective can be a theme. It represents a kind of mental state. I think that good photography should not be so clear and easy to understand. It is worth looking at again.

    IP: Tradition and technology in the context of China's economic growth also seem to be a recurring theme. What do you think your series says about China today?

    WYS: We live in this environment and inevitably react to some realities, but my reaction is not so direct now. My early work was a more related to my photojournalist work, but now I am no longer a journalist. I work for myself. I think reality is a kind of background for photography, but photos must transcend reality and point to the spiritual world.

    IP: What do you want the audience to take away from your work?

    WYS: The charm of photography itself, photography is a beautiful artistic language. But at the same time there are opinions and experiences beyond reality.