Jun Yang

Jun Yang, A Better Tomorrow (installation view), 2006

Jun Yang, A Better Tomorrow (installation view), 2006

Jun Yang’s (b. 1975 China) work reflects his background as an immigrant, an experience shared in various ways by millions of people in the age of globalisation. Born in China, but migrating to Europe as a child, the artist went through various stages of ‘naturalising’ himself, a process in which he discovered not simply what it is to be an immigrant (legal or illegal), but also how one is acculturated into a ‘European citizen’ and what it costs to be a European (born or naturalised), or in fact to be a social being in general.

His work thus addresses specific issues of otherness, but usually from a much wider angle that bears on everyone’s life. Camouflage – Talk Like Them, Look Like Them, for example, is a documentary film starting from a fictive interview with an illegal immigrant and ending with a deep analysis of citizenship which moves from fashion, to speech acts, up to the politics of terror.

In 2004 7.6% of all houses in Liverpool stood empty. Of those, 13,284 had been vacant for at least six months. Often boarded up, the functional lives of these homes are temporarily, or permanently, suspended. 123,000 properties in Merseyside have now been selected for modernisation or demolition with the aim of increasing the diversity of available housing and, consequently, that of potential investors. In parallel with improvements to the city's commercial districts, these interventions bring the promise of a better tomorrow for Liverpool, its residents and workers.

Jun Yang at Liverpool Biennial 2006

A Better Tomorrow, 2006
DVD, neon and Wooden house
Commissioned by Liverpool Biennial 2006
Courtesy of the artist 
Exhibited at Tate Liverpool 

Supported by

Bundeskanzleramt Kunst
(Austrian Federal Chancellery - Art Division)
Gallery Martin Janda, Vienna