My creative journey is rooted in my collection, which in turn originates from my childhood. I was born in 1956 in Tainan, Taiwan, during a time when people's livelihoods were difficult, and the landscape was filled with farmlands and fishponds. "Poverty" was the living portrait of the majority of ordinary people at that time. However, these experiences of an impoverished childhood have astonishingly become the nourishment and energy for my creative expression. As I approached the age of fifty, my fondness and longing for my childhood grew. Many years ago, I frequently visited flea markets or searched online, seeking items that could evoke emotional connections to my childhood: old photographs, vinyl records, toys, folk crafts, daily utensils, and more. What initially started as a simple hobby and collection gradually transformed into essential elements of my creative process.
In the series "Collecting Childhood," I use the backdrop of my childhood in the 1960s. I employ a 4x5 large-format camera and soft films to capture the images. Through a combination of realistic and conceptual approaches, I integrate various techniques such as photography, painting, collage, and computer work to recreate my childhood stories with their vibrant and colorful aspects.
These works are a manifestation of my nostalgia and homage to my childhood, where poverty coexisted with the wonder of childhood. Now, they have become a means for me to express and channel my creativity. Through the "Collecting Childhood" series, I hope to evoke the cherished memories and emotions of viewers, while also prompting contemplation on the significant and meaningful aspects of life.
Chen Chun-Lu was born in 1956 in Tainan, Taiwan. He graduated from a specialized photography school in Tokyo, Japan. He once operated a professional photo printing company in Taipei and co-founded a photography gallery in Taipei as well. Currently, he is retired from the workforce but continues to pursue photography and creative work.
Notable solo exhibitions include:
1985: Solo exhibition "Wind I" at Taipei Fine Arts Museum.
1989: Solo exhibitions "Wind II" at Taipei Fine Arts Museum and Taichung Provincial Art Museum.
1991: Solo exhibition "Dark Breathing" at Taipei Fine Arts Museum.
1992: Solo exhibition "Dark Breathing" at KODAK CULTURE CENTER in Milan, Italy.
1995: Participation in the 1st Tokyo International Photography Biennale "Genesis" at Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography in Japan.
1997: Solo exhibition "Genesis" at Seattle Center, USA, during the "Taiwan Arts Festival."
2000: Solo exhibition "Open Sky" at NIKON SALON in Ginza, Japan.
2006: Group show "Beyond the Horizon. Taiwan Photography 20" exhibition at the National Art Museum of China in Beijing.
2019: Solo exhibition "Collecting Childhood" at NIKON SALON in Ginza and Osaka, Japan.
He has published three photography collections: Wind, Dark Breathing, and Open Sky.
About Artist work