Wang Ningde has achieved something remarkable. In “Some Days” he has created a series of photographs with a mood that is instantly recognisable as his. This mood incorporates nostalgia, memory and dreams.
What are we aware of when we close our eyes to sleep? Either nothing at all or that strange awareness when we dream. The dream is assembled by our unconscious minds from essential elements of our experiences.
One of the essential elements in Wang Ningde`s photographs is the closed eyes, or at least the absence of open eyes. Another element is the Mao suit. Sun Yat-Sen designed the jacket, rejecting the elegance of traditional Chinese clothing and the style of Western dress. The absurd result is that this perversely unaesthetic garment became the emblem of communist China, it`s strange simplicity matching the strange simplicity of the society that adopted it.
In the photographs of the series “Some Days” not all the subjects wear Mao suits, not all show eyes that are closed, but all contain essential parts of the dream. Wang Ningde has distilled 20th Century China into its pure elements.