Huang Wenjun | 1001 Nights



No. 324, 1001 Nights | Photography by Huang Wenjun

Artist’s Monologue

In 2013, I had almost stopped taking photos. My friends all said it was such a shame because I was really good at it, but for me I think it is a natural thing and it does not matter whether I choose to do photography or to write. Everything happens for a reason. Just like that, I do not take that many pictures any more though I still carry my camera in my bag sometimes, just to take a few pictures of some friends. I can see that some day there is only one file left in my computer that is called 1001night. Why is it called night but not nights? It is because each night is so different.  Each day is also different. Slowly I stopped creating more work and started to use the photos I had already as nourishment.

The reason why I first started 1001night was because I just could not stop thinking about the photos I had taken during my long trips. In September 2007 I quit my job in Shanghai and started my tough journey. I went to quite a few countries and cities until I was completely skint after 10 months and I had to return to Shanghai. I still remember my skin was badly burnt and peeled a few times in some hideously hot season. I started writing in 2009 on and off. There was even a year I did not write a single word. Meanwhile, I had more diaries instead and it crushed my bookshelf. I kept on writing and it was like some kind of self-treatment. In 2012, I quite my job again. By chance a writer friend saw my notebook covered with words and suggested ‘why not put them up on the internet?’ ‘Natural high-technophobia’ was my answer. But after that time, high technology had made massive progress and improvements and it brought real convenience to real life. From then on, 1001night has become part of my everyday life. Compared to using a real pen, writing on the Internet is literally a piece of cake. It is so simple and it feels like you are drawing with only one single colour while you are already trained to boss all kinds of colours around.

Each day I pick out an old photo from my memory, I would stare at it for a long time as if I am in a meditation session, and I would try to make it relate to my current life. My writings are divided to three parts which are present, past(the moment when the photo was taken) and future(mostly some phrases or little paragraphs quoted from books, films, songs or magazines). I think it is really wonderful to be able to express yourself through photos while sometimes words just cannot describe.

After a few years of writing and editing, I can feel that: Through this project, I have finally let someone important work out what I was trying to say for so many years. He read my work quietly and our thoughts seemed to meet in our intimate conversation. I realize that is just the meaning of time. Never do a runner, find your own way to talk, communicate and sort things out, you will find yourself eventually.

No. 312, 1001 Nights | Photography by Huang Wenjun
No. 219, 1001 Nights | Photography by Huang Wenjun

To see more work from 1001nights:


Selected Photography Exhibitions in China (JUNE)

1. The Ode of Happiness

Ao Guoxing Photography

2014.05.31 – 2014.06.24

798 Photo Gallery

No.4 Jiuxianqiao Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing

Amusement Part 6 | Ao Guoxing photography


2. Challenge The Tradtion

20th Century Western Classical and Chinese Contemporary Photography

2014.05.24 – 2014.06.29

Inside Out Art Museum

Xishikou Road Art District, Beijing


Challenge The Tradition Poster


3. “The Yellow River”

Zhang Kechun Photography

2014.05.24 – 2014.07.20

Three Shadow +3 Gallery

155A Caochangdi, Chaoyang District, Beijing


Yangzi River | Photography by Zhang Kechun


4. Sense of Presence

The Photography of Lu Yanpeng (2005-2012)

2014.05.31 – 2014.07.27

See+ Art Space /Gallery

B10, 797 Road, 798 Art Space, No.2 Jiuxianqiao Road

Chaoyang District, Beijing

Photography by Lu Yanpeng


5. View From the Window

Yuki Onodera Photography

2014.06.9 – 2014.09.12

kunst.licht Photo Art Gallery

No.210, North Ulumuqi Road, Shanghai

Portraits de Fripes No.32 | Photography by Yuki Onodera