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IntroductionThe overwhelming mood in Han Lei’s work is nostalgia. In nostalgia Han Lei finds timelessness. He loves images that freeze mobility, images that become immutable and lasting representatives. He presents us with the typical misty Chinese mountain we imagine from our knowledge of classical paintings, he seeks out the beautiful female profile we seem to remember from old photographs. While the camera is a most democratic instrument, equitable in granting significance to any living moment, Han Lei has used this instrument to create a hierarchy of types. He is interested in images that can be greater, more permanent and more typical than other images of their class. With these images Han constructs a world that bring alive an order and an aesthetic that is both familiar and distant in time.
1967 Born in Keifeng, Hennan province, china 1989 Graduated from Central Academy of Craft and Design, Beijing, China works and lives in Beijing, China Exhibitions
2005 Portraits, galerie polaris, Paris, France Killing legend, 798 photo Gallery, Beijing, China 2004 Han Lei photographs, art scene china, Shanghai, China 2003 Strange, aura gallery, Shanghai, China 2001 Fictional landscape, Beijing, China 1997 Alienation, Hippolyte gallery, Helsinki, Finland Podwell gallery, Berlin, Germany
2005 Viewing the city, Guangzhou Photo Biennial, Guangdong Museum of Art, China 2004 Forbidden City international photography exhibition, Beijing,China Intersection: contemporary oil painting and photography, chambers fine art, New York, U.S.A. 2003 From China: contemporary Chinese photography, gallery image,Denmark A strange heaven: contemporary Chinese photography, the nationalart museum, Prague, Czech Republic Tempo di donne, sala gatti, Viterbo, Italy Rome photography festival, Rome, Italy 2002 Dialogue: beautiful and tragic, two Spanish photographers and two Chinese photographers, capital museum, Beijing, China Golden harvest: Chinese contemporary art, Croatia national museum, Croatia Facing reality:Photographs of Han Lei, Wang Shilong and Zhang Hai’er, China art archives & warehouse, Beijing, China 2001 1:1? The 3rd Ping Yao international photography festival, Ping Yao,China Disorientation: photography and video in China today, chambers fine art, New York, U.S.A. 2000 Cities of the 21st century: Siemens cultural program, Frankfurt, Germany; New York, U.S.A. 1999 A visible spirit: contemporary photography from the People’s Republic of China, Cypress college photography galleries, California, U.S.A. 1998 Railways and people: the 1998 Mother Jones international fund for documentary photography awards, art center and studio gallery, San Francisco, U.S.A. 1996 China: aktuelles aus 15 ateliers, Reithalle, Munich, Germany 1995 International art festival of Brussels, Brussels, Belgium 1994 Contemporary photography from Mainland China, Taiwan and Hong Kong, Hong Kong arts centre, Hong Kong, China 1993 The 6th rodez photofolies festival, Aveyron, France