New Exhibition: Not Homeland


Recently, China is in the state of modernisation and urbanisation. The situation in China can be compared to Europe in mid 19th century and the USA in the 20th century. But the modernisation and urbanisation of China comprises serious changes for the lives and mind sets of one billion Chinese farmers – a sixth of the world population in total. That is why this process has significant impact and meaning.

Domestic Migration in China

Artist Li Dong has a great interest in the inner-city village in the Yuexiu district, Guangzhou. There, he observed people and families in the urban village Dengfeng. He plans to photograph the history of dozens of different families to depict the structure of modern humanism.

Now, the new exhibition „Not Homeland“ focuses on the social problems of domestic migration against the background of the urban village Dengfeng. Different problems are occurring for the new migrants/residents about identity, mind sets, questions of belonging, home and destination. The camera has observed mainly people living in Dengfeng since a decade. But emotional distress is an issue for most Chinese people in this age of modernisation. It is to be expected that the works in this exhibition kindle a profound discussion about this uncertainty. Where is actually home and what are we fighting for?

Watch a video of the exhibition

„Not Homeland“ is the title of Li Dong’s new exhibition. It was shown in Guanghzou from the 11th to 19th of April, 2015. For some impressions of the exhibition, watch a short video about it here.

Thanks to Juan Yang, LL.M. for translating the original text in Chinese to German.

Collaboration continues

LiDong and Michaela Pelican

The collaboration between artist Li Dong and Professor Michaela Pelican from the University of Cologne continues. Li Dong and Prof. Michaela Pelican are in touch regularly for the exchange of new ideas and plans.

Check our blog regularly for updates on new projects, exhibitions and the work of Li Dong. Until then feel free to download your copy of the exhibition catalogue „Baohan Street: An African Community in Guangzhou. Documentary photographs by Li Dong“ as pdf here.

UPCOMING EVENT: Vernissage And Panel Discussion With The Artist

Baohan Exhibition Poster

BAOHAN STREET: An African Community in Guangzhou (China)

Photo exhibition by Li Dong (artist) and Michaela Pelican (curator)
October 15 – November 15, 2014
University of Cologne, Main Building (Ground Floor)

Vernissage and panel discussion with the artist:
October 16, 2014, 6pm
University of Cologne, Neuer Senatssaal (Main Building)

Over the past two decades, the People’s Republic of China has become a new and attractive destination for migrants from all over the world, including Africa. The city of Guangzhou, with its long history of international trade, has attracted between 200,000 and 500,000 Africans, primarily to do business. A famous ‘African Street’, named Baohan Street, has emerged in Yuexiu District, one of the oldest districts of Guangzhou.

The daily lives of Africans who make themselves at home in Baohan Street have been documented by the photographer Li Dong for over two years. Li Dong has been interested in the striking social and economic transformations in China’s recent history, and the emergence of migrant communities as the ‘new Guangzhou residents’. A selection of his works will be exhibited in the Main Building of the University of Cologne from October 15 to November 15, 2014.

The official opening event of the photo exhibition will take place on October 16, 2014. The artist will be present at the vernissage and panel discussion.

More upcoming events during the exhibition:

October 18, 2014, 3-5pm
Guided tour with the artist
Venue: Main Building, University of Cologne (Ground Floor)

October 24, 2014, 6-9.30pm
Film screening
Venue: Auditorium E, Hörsaalgebäude, University of Cologne