Channel 5


Shanghai and Beijing have developed during the last years several Art zones. Formerly industrial areas, later occupied by groups of artists, they are now well managed economic zones dedicated to any kind of art. They host galleries, shops, restaurants. They are very popular among flickerized photographers during the weekend, it’s a common scene to see a group of dudes with Canokon huge white zooms, portable flashes and light reflectors surrounding a nice looking model, hired for the day.

For the fine art lovers, expensive and fashion Chinese modern art is priced crazily,  only few visitors can afford. For the others, galleries have launched a full range of products like postcards, t-shirts, books, etc… Compared to the European market of modern art, this is somehow more democratic and freestyle. Of course, only a tiny part of the population is visiting these places, but the global feeling is more relax that most of the hyped galleries and museums of Paris.


Changzhou city in Jiangsu province didn’t want to miss that fashion. An amazing place have been found: a former industrial zone near the channel number five. The zone is planned, it is now under construction but already few photographs exhibitions are visible. I guess it will take time before it reach the critical mass of artist and visitors. I have been there last winter, it might be already finished now.

It was the end of the day, a Sunday, in December. The lights were beautiful, and the shadows not so deep. I tried to capture the weirdness and the beauty of this empty place in colors.

Later, I walked on the other side of the channel, under the dying sun, I did another set of photographs, another reality to be published here soon. For the curious – The place is called 常州运河5号.