I don’t know if you feel the same way but I realized that I often keep focusing on photography and on photographic inspirations in the western world only. I spend a lot of time in social networks and mainly browsing photo journals to find exceptional photographers, trends or news. Recently I’ve come to the conclusion that I keep mainly focusing on inspirations from the US, from Europe and sometimes from South America, but I rarely write about the world of photography in Asia or Africa. That’s why I’ve decided to expand my horizon. And I’ll start today by introducing you to China’s most feted photographer: Lu Guang.
When you think about how renowned and awarded the work of La Guang has become, he still remains a mystery. We don’t know a lot about this photographer as he neither has his own photo website nor does he use any social media platform. His pictures, however, are known around the world. In his projects Lu Guang dedicates himself to fundamental social, health and environment related issues in present-day China. His pictures show coal miners marked by their harsh and health endangering work, the life of people living in villages in the Henan province, which are also called “AIDS villages”, the environmental impact of the construction of the Qinghai-Tibet railway, and many more things.
The photos by the former silk factory worker have been awarded many times by now. In 2004, for example, he won the World Press Photo Award for his work on the Henan province. In 2008 he received the Henri Nannen Prize for Photo Journalism and in 2013 the Prince Claus Award. Moreover, he was also awarded research grants of several thousand US dollars by National Geographic and the W. Eugene Smith Institute for his projects.
Photos: Lu Guang