EK Interview: Yung Cheng Lin


The art of Yung Cheng Lin is gripping, compelling, and raw. I feel like I could make a Jackson Pollock out of all the adjectives and emotions I feel staring at his pieces. Damn. Where the hell does it all come from? Check out his interview for a peek:

How long have you been a photographer? What was your earlier work like? How have you changed since you began as a photographer? How is photography different from other media in the experimentation and diversity of genre?
I have enjoyed painting and anything related to art since my childhood, and I majored in art during my schooling. My main interesting in university was sculpture. However, photography is more direct way to convey the feeling I would like to express and I did not have enough time sculpturing after starting working. Hence, photos became my main tool to present my concepts.


Besides, people nowadays no longer fancy reading but love photographs. Relatively, if the photographs are more compelling to people, it is much easier to spread my ideas or the issues I want to present.


How do you experiment as a photographer? How can you do something novel with photography? What is the importance of novelty and experimentation in photography? How are you advancing the medium?
I love reading poems. Through reading, the imagination and the meaning of the poem’s words will be combined with my life experience, which leads to the creation of my works. Therefore, poetry plays an important role in stimulating my creative ideas and artistic diversity.


In every piece of my work I pursue novelty and experimentation. However, the perception of the composition in the photo is also important. Besides, the sense of beauty will be taken into account in vision arrangement too. Simply put, the proper composition plays a crucial role leading viewers to think, bringing some impact and even causing resonance. Viewers will generate questions in their mind, and start plunging deep into thought, and then try to answer them.


I never note any explanations or creation ideas because it is a pity not to let viewers feel, think, and answer the questions they have in their mind after seeing my works.

Are you a surrealist? Your work challenges reality, or normalcy, why? What does this mean to you? How is your perception of reality reflected in your work?
My photography style is more like surrealism, and I would like to define it as “the surrealism in reality”.


You’ve shot all over the place, how do you choose your venues? A lot of your photos are on playgrounds and schools it looks like, do they have a particular attraction to you? Or meaning to you?
To be honest, there are no particular shooting locations or venues; however, if I review all my works, it is not hard to find out that schools and playgrounds are in the majority. I only can say it is my daily life, and most of my works are surrounded it.


What is the meaning of your incorporation of string and sewing with your subjects? What does the manipulation of the body mean to you? How is your use of string different than tattoos? What does the introduction of foreign objects into the body mean to you?
In the string and sewing collection, I transfer the idea of Chinese religion “The Matchmaking God” into my works. It is said that everyone has an invisible red thread on his/her wrist. Therefore, I used red string to present women who are eager to seek their ultimate love. Sewing is a presentation to let viewers feel pain. When the viewers look at my work at their first sight, they can experience the pain instantly, and it can cause resonance in their mind. What they feel arouses them to think, and then generate empathy for the model. This is what I want them to experience. This is also an idea of exchanging feedback between both sides. It is interesting for viewers to savor what this work brings to them.


Human body is the most direct way to create sensation for people empathetically.
Also, I choose a female model to let people rethink what this work means from a man’s point of view. It is attractive and interesting.


Where do you want to go next with experimentation in photography? What will you do next?
Recently, I have been reading Roland Barthes’ “Fragments d’un discours amoureux”. This book inspires me to have a lot of imagination and pictures with its classical, beautiful, and elegant sentences. Additionally, it fits my photographic style as well; therefore, my current creation is to digest what this book brings me and then generate some different compositions. This is what I call the interesting combination to the difference emotions between the modern and old generation.


Do you have a favorite photographer?
So far…no favorite photographer.