Liu Zheng was born in 1969 in Wuqiang County in Hebei province and grew up in Shanxi province. After studying optical engineering at Beijing Technology Institute, he served as a professional photojournalist for Worker's Daily from 1991 to 1997. For the past decade, Chinese artist Liu Zheng has been working on his ambitious photographic project "The Chinese." In the finished work, Zheng has captured a people and a country in a unique time of flux.
Zheng seeks out moments in which archetypal Chinese characters are encountered in extreme and unexpected situations. His subjects have included street eccentrics, homeless children, street performers, provincial drug traffickers, coal miners, Buddhist monks, prison inmates, Taoist priests, waxwork figures in historical museums, and the dead and dying. Zheng's photographs betray a dark vision, albeit one that is laced with offsetting humor.
Liu Zheng, Peking Opera - Quelling The White Bone Demon,1997, Gelatin Sliver Print, 46 cm x 46 cm