The Yellow River
ESSAY CONTAINS EXPLICIT CONTENT
The Yellow River
Saying that it is a song might have been a popular joke. Saying that it is our mother river or the root of soul might have been a deliberate oblivion. Indulging ourselves in the turbulent pleasures of modernized world day after day, we might have put the winding river out of mind, and would not like to give any more calm gaze on it, even a second.
It is a river! No matter if it meanders or goes forward straight; if it’s swelling or dry; if it flows rapidly or slowly; if it’s lively or tranquil; if it’s majestic or elegant; if it’s simple or magnificent; if it possesses brightness or dark; if it’s colorful or gloomy; if it’s only an imagination and reality, it always embraces people’s life and fate, joy and sorrow, faith and hesitance.
Then I determined to go and follow its pace, with all my courage and my only presentable tool — a large-format camera. That is my implicit expression. I have the knowledge that mountains and rivers are nothing a photographer may properly comment on, and behaviors like growling, making a bold pledge or a plaintive complaint on the presence of such an eternal being may look inappropriate. Now, it’s the moment that I must wake up my silent soul to quietly keep watch on it flowing for seasons, to stare at it through this journey, to drink a toast to it, to sing a song for it, and to have a sleep beside it.
Who is keeping watching on whom? Who is wrapped with the flow with whom? While be alive, we all go by with time. But we are still here, and we may have a better consideration on the future after having a look at the past and the present with heart.
Zhang Kechun was born in 1980 in Sichuan province, China. He now lives and works in Chengdu. His work has been reported by multiple publications including Time, BBC News, Telegraph Magazine, China Photo Magazine and so on. His works have been collected internationally by many other museums and private Collectors from U.S.A, France, Germany, Japan and China, such as Chinese Image and Video Archive, Canada; Williams College Museum of Arts, USA; and CAFA Art Museum, China.