Born in 1986 in Kunming, China. Lives and works in Beijing.
Defined as a conceptual artist, Ye Funa adopts in her photographs and videos a masterful expressive technique in order to investigate the matter of cultural identity through a re-reading and transposition of images that strongly characterize the collective memory of China.
In the project presented at Pièce Unique Variations called « Family Albums », Ye Funa compares old family photographs with those recreated by her in which she personally interprets each character. In the videos, produced with the moving images technique, the recorded voices are those of the original characters interspersed with sounds of family conversations in dialect. A work that started from a personal suggestion assumes then an historical and documentary significance, which « reconciles fiction and reality, exhibitionism and voyeurism, actor and spectator » (Ye Funa)
In the complex project entitled « Nationalities Illustration Covers » Ye Funa documents the evolution of the image of ethnic minorities in China through the media. Image which is based on stereotypes originated in the 50s, she explains. Ye Funa invited friends and relatives, as well as ordinary workers she knows, to dress up and act as the characters of the propaganda-like historical ethnic magazine The Nationalities Pictorial published for fifty years by the Chinese State Party organs. Through deliberate and unnatural rigidity of the actors and the oleographic atmospheres, the artist investigate those cliché of Chinese culture to find a contemporary authenticity inside. Photos and videos will be exposed at Pièce Unique Variations, while the space at rue Jacques Callot will host the video installation « Minority Scenery ».
Ye Funa has an impeccable career path: having graduated in Experimental Art from the prestigious Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing, and then obtaining an MFA from Central St Martin’s College of Art in London, she currently teaches at the Sichuan Fine Arts Institute in Chongqing, with exhibitions in China and abroad. Daughter of the famous painter Ye Yongqing, Ye Funa artistic mastery is completely independent from the older generation. All her works respond to the overwhelming need to redefine the cultural identity of those who grew up in post-80 contemporary China and now are observing the constantly changing traditional values of family and society due to the effects of mediatization and globalization. The exhibition at Gallery Pièce Unique is her first solo show in the West.