Chang Chien-Chi


Newly-arrived immigrants live in crowded tenement buildings, Chinatown, New York, 1998.

In his work, Chien-Chi Chang brings to life the abstract concepts of alienation and connection. The Chain, a collection of portraits made in a mental asylum in Taiwan, caused a sensation when it was shown at La Biennale di Venezia (2001) and the Bienal de Sao Paulo (2002).

The shocking, nearly life-size photographs of pairs of patients literally chained together resonated with Chang’s jaundiced look at the less visible bonds of marriage. He has treated marital ties in two books – I do, I do, I do (2001), a collection of images depicting alienated grooms and brides in Taiwan, and Double Happiness (2005), a brutal depiction of the business of selling brides in Vietnam.

For 21 years, Chang has also photographed and videoed Chinese immigrants in New York’s Chinatown, along with those of their wives and families back home in Fujian. Chang joined Magnum Photos in 1995 and was elected as a full member in 2001.

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