About the Photographer
Chinese, b. 1963
In a series of performances entitled Bonjour Young Hay (After Courbet), Young Hay reinterprets Gustave Courbet’s 19th century painting of the artist as a traveler by visiting cities throughout the world with a large blank white canvas on his back. In the photographs documenting the performances, Young remains hidden and the canvas appears as an empty, luminous void interrupting the landscape. This series can be read as a reference to current transformations in China, as visual influences from the West have been incorporated into aesthetic patterns from the East. It could also be seen as reinterpreting a nineteenth century art-historical reference as an allusion to the Buddhist notion of the void.