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“12 Moons” by Gao Yuan

Gao Yuan lives and works in Beijing and New York. Her photographic assemblage called Twelve Moons confronts the traditional subject of Mother and Child through an innovative combination of digital photography in the backgrounds, film in the foregrounds and montage, all integrated by a scanning process. This artistic project began with a casting call for mothers with children in Beijing, and many of the sitters are wives of construction workers who flocked from distant provinces in search of jobs in the city.  Most who answered the artist’s call had male children, a result of China’s one-child policy, although the artist chose female children as sitters, as well.  To complete the cyclical and conceptual aspect of this ambitious project, she superimposed digital “tattoos” on the image of each child to mark the years of the Chinese Zodiac. It is no surprise that Twelves Moons was shown to great critical acclaim at Shanghai MoCA’s exhibition Butterfly Dream this fall.