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Bees & The Bearable | Chen Zhe
  • Bees & The Bearable | Chen Zhe



    Presented as a layered notebook weaving in and out of images and texts, Bees & The Bearable restores Chen Zhe’s practice as an ongoing process of exploration, discovery and research. What happens when actions that can jeopardize one's existence, such as hurting one's own body, in return serve the purpose of understanding the existence itself? Should we see it as a fluky escape, or a relief from the weight of modern life? While the individual response may differ, the book illustrates that there still lies psychological connectedness that undoubtedly link each of us together. Everything else follows from there.


    Bees & The Bearable was awarded the Best Photobook of the Year by Kassel Fotobookfestival in 2016





    Chen Zhe’s practice is often rooted in self-reflection, which expands and engages with the universal experience of life. Her subjects are often inherently paradoxical, such as the body that can simultaneously experience pain and relief (The Bearable & Bees), the nebulous zone where day turns into night (Towards Evenings: Six Chapters), and the life that vacillates between impermanence and eternity (A Slow Remembering of a Long Forgetting). Springing from and expanding on her photographic work, Chen’s recent projects focus on the expressive potential of temporality in different mediums and environments. Her projects tend to develop organically over the span of several years, with works that annotate each other as they unravel, and present an ongoing process of research and discovery.

    Chen Zhe (b.1989, Beijing) received her BFA in Photography and Imaging from Art Center College of Design in Los Angeles. Her works has been exhibited at Lillehammer Art Museum, Norway (2022); UCCA Dune, Qinhuangdao (2021); Yokohama Triennale, Japan (2020); Plug In ICA, Canada (2020);  Ming Contemporary Art Museum, Shanghai (2020); Staatliche Kunsthalle Baden-Baden, Germany (2019); White Rabbit Gallery, Australia (2019); the 9th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art, Australia (2018); Tokyo Photographic Art Museum, Japan (2018); Para Site, Hong Kong (2018); OCAT Shenzhen, Shenzhen (2018); Guangzhou Photo Triennial, Guangzhou (2017); Anren Biennale, Chengdu (2017); CAFA Art Museum, Beijing (2017); the 11th Shanghai Biennial, Shanghai (2016); Minsheng Art Museum, Shanghai (2016); University of Toronto Art Centre, Canada (2014); Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing (2013); Fotohof, Austria (2012); Three Shadows Photography Art Centre (2011) and more.

    Chen Zhe is the recipient of the Inge Morath Award from the Magnum Foundation (2011), Three Shadows Award (2011), Lianzhou Festival Photographer of the Year Award (2012), Xitek New Talent Award (2015) and the Foam Talent (2018). She is also subject of TV documentary films Chinese Viewfinder  (ARTE, France, 2013) and China Through the Lens of Youth (NHK, Japan, 2014). Her publication Bees & The Bearable was awarded the Best Photobook of the Year by Kassel Fotobookfestival in 2016.





    Size: 260 × 210 × 25 mm

    Format: 1+19 saddle-stitched booklets, 280 pages

                      includes 75 color plates, 40 grayscale journals & letters

    Published by Jiazazhi, February 2023, first edition, third printing


      - This is a pre-order: copies will start shipping from 10th July 2023
      - Please allow 1 to 3 business days for processing prior to shipping
      - Delivery times vary by destination

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