BY Chen Xiaoyi 陈萧伊

Size: 260mmX90mm
44 folds, Traditional Chinese binding, Acrylic Hardcover
with a poster, housed into a paper box
First Edition: 500, Published in Dec 2017

5700jpy, 45euro, 50usd╱Buy the book



About the artist

Koan is the possibility to open up the territory of pre-verbal.As human beings, our reality based on symbolic matrix, so all possibility of our thoughts and wisdom be covered and limited by signifying chain. Only vision as a product of the non-material is closer to a concept of purity, so through photography as my own philosophical approach, I try to explore beneath the surface of things by simpli cation and abstraction to awaken spiritual awareness and intuition before the symbolic.

As Eastern philosophies, Tao and Zen always advise peopleto stay absolutely quiet and purify thought processes. In order to achieve this goal, our attention should focus on the most basic form of the universe’s existence. In Zen Buddhism, Koan is a story or riddle used to help in the attainment of a state of spontaneous re ection, free from planning and analytical thought. In contradiction to Western philosophy, Koan’s emphasize the inadequacy of language and words, and the importance of intuition over reason and logic, to transform the self.

I named the series as “Koan”, and selected abstract landscape photographs to do photo-etching process; the results of this craft are poetic and full of imaginations. Also only uses black ink and print on di erent Japanese papers, the color is deriving from the atmosphere of desolation and melancholy and the expression of minimalism in ancient Chinese poetry and monochromatic

About the book

Xiaoyi Chen was born in Sichuan, China in 1992, she received an MA Photography from London College of Communication in 2014, currently lives and works in Chengdu. Chen’s practice is tied to a natural, oriental aesthetic, in uenced by Western abstract art and oriental philosophy. Her recent work focuses on the combination of photography and printmaking, a combination of techniques used to explore beneath the surface of things by simplifying and abstracting; an approach aimed at reviving spiritual awareness and intuition before entering the symbolic nature of what we view. Xiaoyi Chen has exhibited internationally; she was awarded the Three Shadows Photography Award in 2015, China’s most prestigious photography prize, and named one of Asia’s 30 Artist under 30 by Forbes magazine 2017. Her recent awards and exhibitions include the participation in the Format International Photography Festival, Kassel Photobook Festival, Athens Photo Festival (Benaki Museum) and the group show China 8 at Museum Folkwang (Essen, Germany). Recent Art Fairs, include Photo Shanghai and Paris Asian Art Fair in 2016, solo project in London Art Fair 2017.


于 2014 年获得伦敦艺术大学纯艺术摄影硕士学位,目 前工作生活于成都。 她的作品以摄影为主并结合版画、手工书、影像等形 式,着眼于自然作为中间介质,探讨面对精神性的直观 体验。她的作品曾获得中国第七届三影堂摄影奖大奖, 入围 2015 年巴塞罗那摄影节,入选福布斯 2017「30 UNDER 30(Art)」亚洲榜单,并参与诸多国内外展 览,如个展项目「The Inadequacy of Language」(罗 马 Matèria Gallery,2016)、「Art projects」(伦敦 艺术博览会,2017),部分群展展出于英国 Format 摄 影节、德国卡塞尔摄影书节、雅典 Benaki 博物馆、德国 Folkwang 博物馆、Photo Shanghai 艺博会、巴黎亚洲 艺博会等。