"Arts, to me, are the observations and reflections of life. Fortunately, I have the opportunity to use art as a method to communicate with my audience." Ruoheng Li
Previously, I have engaged in extensive work centred on the political and subject matters of other countries where I have observed and lived in. During the pandemic, I had the chance to return to China and revisit the community where I grew up.
Upon my return, I was struck by the tremendous changes in this community, which mirror the overall transformations in China. Based on the research of this community, I can see how China has changed and progressed. I have gained a profound understanding of how the reform and opening-up of China have imprinted itself on me.
In my China Project series, I place emphasis on two aspects. Firstly, I delve into China's rapid economic development from the 90s to the present day, encompassing the tools of communication and consumerism. Secondly, I highlight the values and core principles of the Chinese education system while exploring the contrasting perspectives of Western and Eastern educational values.
As an interesting witness to these changes, I have personally experienced both the traditional Chinese values that prioritize family and collectivism as well as experienced the American values that emphasize individualism and freedom.
I have witnessed the value of a "simple life" within a community during times of material scarcity. Furthermore, I have observed the gradual spread of consumerism within Chinese society, which has redefined societal values and expectations in contemporary times.
Entitled "Memory Fragments," my series encompasses various aspects of memories, including architecture, entertainment, the neighbourhood and school experiences.
Throughout this series, I strive to balance a documentary perspective with my personal experiences. My objective is to capture the transformative changes of the era and explore the lasting imprints it has left on our generation.