Polaroids from the Middle Kingdom: Old and New World Visions of China
Foreword by Katherine Don.
Upon relocating to Beijing, photographer Lukas Birk attempts to escape the sense of stagnation that plagued him in his central European home. He encounters a group of like-minded young creatives who share his sentiment of "nostalgia teetering on the edge of melancholy." Hoping to express that feeling, Birk discovers his father’s collection of expired Polaroid film. With Birk's medium acting as a metaphor for the transformation of modern China—its rapid development and the void of nostalgia left behind—this book presents a sense of something from the past interrupted by modern motives, a collision of old and new world visions. In her insightful foreword, art advisor Katherine Don details Birk's contribution to contemporary art in China and comments on his pioneering innovation. Birk's stunning collection of inventive imagery captures the vibrancy of contemporary life, inspired by the filter of his own nostalgia and longing.
About the Author:
Lukas Birk is an Austrian born multimedia artist, explorer and organizer. He was educated in Austria and the UK. A former journalist for Austrian and German media, he worked as a news correspondent and photographer in his late teens and early twenties. After extensive travels in India and South-East Asia, he decided to study art at LCMM in London, where he complete a BA in digital arts and photography. Birk has been a traveler for the last ten years, focusing heavily on East Asia and the Middle East. His experiences traveling in Afghanistan, the Gobi desert, India, and more are all interwoven in his work. He currently lives in both China and Indonesia and continues to travel for at least four months a year. Several publications are planned for the next years, including a coffee table book of his Polaroids from the Middle Kingdom series and the Afghan Box Camera Project.
128 pages; 15 x 12"; landscape jacketed;
hardcover; 70 4/c photos