Fu Wenjun, born in 1955, Chinese contemporary artist, was graduated from Sichuan Fine Arts Institute. He creates principally through the art media of photography, installation, sculpture and oil painting, and has put forward the concept and practice of “Digital Pictorial Photography”.
His works embody his thinking and reflection on many issues related to the Eastern and Western history, culture and humanity, including the relationship between different cultures in the age of globalization, the heritage of traditional Chinese culture in a rapidly changing society, industrialization and urbanization in Chinese cities.
He has presented solo exhibitions at the Museu Europeu de Arte Moderno (Barcelona), at the National Art Museum of China (Beijing), at the Old Summer Palace Museum (Beijing), at the Today Art Museum (Beijing), at the United Nations Headquarters (New York), at the Guangdong Museum of Art (Guangzhou) and at other international art organizations. His works are exhibited at significant international exhibitions, such as the Esposizione Triennale di Arti Visive a Roma, London Art Biennale, the Biennale Internazionale d’Arte del Mediterraneo, the Triennale dell’Arte Contemporanea, the 1st Asia Biennial/5th Guangzhou Triennial, the XVIII Bienal de Cerveira, NordArt, the collateral exhibition of Biennale di Venezia 2013, entitled Voice of the Unseen Chinese Independent Art 1979/Today.
He has gained numerous awards, including the first prize from International Biennial of Contemporary Art in Argentina, “The Best Artist in the World” at Tour Eiffel La Grande Exposition Universelle, International Award “Lorenzo il Magnifico” of X Florence Biennale.
His artworks are collected by Museu Europeu de Art Moderno, National Art Museum of China, Today Art Museum, the Old Summer Palace Museum, Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum, Kennedy Family, World Council of Peoples for the United Nations, Dazu Grotto Museum, Chongqing Art Museum, Guangdong Museum of Art, Société Nationale des Beaux Arts of France, Egypt Ahmed Shawki Museum and other significant organizations and collectors.
Fu Wenjun and His Digital Pictorial Photography
Digital Pictorial Photography（数绘摄影）, a photography style created by Chinese contemporary artist Fu Wenjun（傅文俊）, represents a photographic art expression working through digital post-processing and multiple exposure, with the integration of pictorial aesthetic features. Presented with the media of photography, it is comprehensively developed on the basis of the modern and contemporary art ideas, including Conceptual Art, Pop Art, Dadaism, Abstract Expressionism. Digital Pictorial Photography provides the artist a great freedom, helping him to get rid of the objective recording function of photography, which he believes is a limit for photography to develop as an art. So, he can boldly melt pictorial elements into photography, creating in a way something like Chinese traditional freehand brushwork, heartily and carrying through without stopping to express artist’s emotions, reflection and spirit. In Wenjun’s Digital Pictorial Photography works, you can find out his subjective thinking of various issues and his diverse, lasting art exploration on this innovative photography style, which provides the viewers a very different, often surprising visual experience.
Mr. Fu once talked about why he put forward Digital Pictorial Photography and what he would like to bring in his works:
“In China, predominated by the government system, for a long time photography has been guided as a tool to record the reality and to tell the stories. This mainstream idea has ignored photography’s huge creative potential which is born with. The space for Chinese contemporary art photography to grow up is squeezed. Now there are just a few professional artists who still insist on the road of exploring art photography, especially who aims at creatively developing it based on the continuation of Chinese culture and art.
I always focus my art creation with the media of photography and I feel confused about this situation. But I never chose to follow the mainstream. Digital Pictorial Photography is a new art photography I propose. Multi-spot perspective, shading created by ink and water, rhythmic vitality filled with human emotion and spirit are just some characteristics of Chinese traditional painting. Usually the photography based on the optics cannot produce these effects. And I apply them in my photography art creation, as a result the space relation and color relation are reconstructed, which afford more for thought the ideas conveyed in the images, not just the outstanding pictorial intensity and beauty.”
Wang Lin （王林）, Chinese art critic, Professor at Sichuan Fine Arts Institute, Doctorial Supervisor at Xi’an Academy of Fine Arts, commented Digital Pictorial Photography in his article:
“Fu Wenjun doesn’t care about the difference between photography and painting. His works come into being by the destruction of the photographic images…To him, diverse cultural integration is a very natural thing; what he should face is just the computer screen that gathers all images. Photographic source materials have left their original situation, go into the computer and become the information that will stimulate the artist’s inspiration. What he is doing is to feel the relationship between history and present time, objects and individuals. Because Fu Wenjun has the freedom of destruction and the possibility of recombination, he doesn’t care about the documentary nature of the photography, neither the style of painting. Thanks to scrawl lines, freely-appearing or hidden forms, unexpected light and darkness, simple or cool-warm combined colors, and various photo post-processing methods, his artwork images are very variable: juxtaposition and transparency, high definition and obscurity, solid and dreamlike effects, harsh brushstrokes and slight changes. Fu Wenjun has really entered a computer quick processing and freely on-the-spot creative state, which is phylogenic and stepwise. The formation of his personal style is not rational nor based on the regulations, but is the result of the interaction and the mutual promotion between the subjective conception and the potentiality stimulation. From the mottled, bright, abundant and even extremely complicated color effects, we can feel Fu Wenjun’s excitement during the art creation, filled with intense art endowments and impulsive aesthetic pursuits.In Fu Wenjun Digital Pictorial Photography works, post-processing is an important part, but different from computer painting, he never gives up camera shooting, and he always loves the relation between photography and reality throughout the illusory image “drawing”. His photography is the result of a continuous “drawing” and altering process. Just along with the endless changes of reality and illusion, fact and fiction, the art can probably catch the secrets within history and human beings, human beings and history.”