With the recent booming Chinese economy, Asia has become a new superpower with might to be reckoned with. Aside from this, it’s younger population is enjoying a first class experience, most of them newly minted millionaires in the brand new city. The Pudong river flowing black through the middle of the city, with pollution being the byproduct of the massive pace of this bustling economy.
Chinese culture currently eats up all western ideas as new fads come and go at breakneck speeds, and with these brand names that pop up, these brands become a symbol of power and money. To know, or to have a laowai- Mandarin for foreigner- friend is a good asset. But whats even better is to represent your wealth in the city. The way you show that business is good, by buying luxury European brands. Handbags, purses, wallets, jewelry, clothing, shoes, and cars. All of these things must come from the west, to show your class, to show your wealth, to show your knowledge, and to just be hip. It’s what’s in style. In one of the many breathtaking 50+ story shopping malls, some with ornate baroque designs that have more funding from the Chinese government than its healthcare, simple t-shirts, can command prices above $5,000 RMB (currently roughly $738 in USD). These simple t-shirts become much more than a brand, they become a way of life. The importance of this fashion trend has taken the city by storm in a very short amount of time. This fashion trend speaks waves about Chinese culture, and ironically it’s from London?
Writing and photos by The Art Deal
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Shot on location in Shanghai, China — a collection of photographs ranging from elevator shots to city streets. Through this “fashion photography” we start to accumulate a wealth of knowledge about the Chinese way of life as we are given the photographer’s first hand view of life in the big city. The artist statement could be leaning towards the youth of China, giving faces to these new powerful human beings which are coming of age, and giving a hint of a rebellion that may be forming. The subjects in the photographs are quick to flaunt their image, yet superficial in their knowledge of others surrounding them. A new egotistical era perhaps.
A new Era is forming. A change in the way people are thinking, working and living. Ironically, this socialist system isn’t what we originally feared. It is working in ways that the western world couldn’t imagine, and its people are thriving in a much more capitalistic way.
As China consumes more Western ideas, slowly (or fast as China is known for) ideas and ways of life may change. Life becomes better in the East.
Please check out my recent book available on Amazon about a body of artwork made in China. Appreciate your engaging comments below!