“Discovering the world is photography’s most valuable purpose, and recording these discoveries is photography’s intrinsic quality.”
In his series of photographs of Chinese pagodas, Lin Shu explores the architectural forms and spiritual depths of these traditional buildings. Shooting in black and white and using techniques such as tilt-shift, his photographs offer an almost mesmerizing record the artistry and technical beauty of their subjects. While his compositions remain relatively simple, they manage to convey the mystical, almost otherworldly aura of the pagodas as man-made structures and symbolic representations of the Buddha and faith itself.
“I do not wish to use photography as a tool to reevaluate or validate ancient Chinese texts according to Western academic standards. Nor do I want to create photographic icons emulating the ‘traditional image.’ I wish to express through photography a sense of spirituality that is running through my body, feelings, perception, aesthetics, and life experience. I don’t consider my process a method but an experience – the pure synthesis of the spiritual and the individual.”
― both quotes from Lin Shu’s afterword (included in Chinese & English translation)