Caochangdi Photospring - Arles in Beijing 2012
Caochangdi PhotoSpring – Arles in Beijing is an annual photography festival that brings together local and international photography in the vibrant setting of the Chinese capital. It was initiated in 2010 by two Beijing-based organizations, Thinking Hands and the Three Shadows Photography Art Centre. Its mission is to create and develop a high-profile platform in China entirely devoted to photography. Caochangdi PhotoSpring began with a three-year collaboration with the most important international photography festival, Les Rencontres d’Arles The event is organized in conjunction with the French Embassy in China and is part of the Croisements Festival.

This year, Caochangdi PhotoSpring features about 30 exhibitions in partnership with galleries and institutions in Caochangdi, the 798, and beyond. PhotoSpring runs from April 21 to May 31 and showcases the work of more than 200 Chinese and international artists.

PhotoSpring 2012 is the third edition of this long-term collaboration with Arles. The festival has continued to broaden its international photography network as well as maintaining its emphasis on young Chinese photography. From the international photography world, PhotoSpring features 2011 Nadar Prize winner Jean-Christian Bourcart, Singaporean photographer Stefen Chow, and Japanese photographer Hisaji Hara. The Three Shadows Photography Award Exhibition showcases the talents of a new generation of Chinese photographers while other exhibitions allow young curators to share their views on contemporary Chinese photography. Caochangdi PhotoSpring celebrates its relationship with the festival Les Rencontres d’Arles through a special exhibition curated by its director François Hébel, who presents Brian Griffin’s latest series, The Black Country, for the first time in China. The photography collection of the French region Pays de la Loire is also a highlight of this year’s programming.  Thinking Hands organized, produced and curated several high-profile exhibitions and events, most of which are shown for the first time in China.