Xiang-Yun Chen: A Package from Home


Facade © Xiang-Yun Chen

Xiang-Yun Chen was born and raised in China, and is now living in New York. 'Package from Home' is a nicely-executed, easy-to-consume, perfectly-encapsulated photo project, to which many of us can relate - especially in NYC where about 1 in every 2 of us claims to be an ex-pat.


Mum's favorite soup

Chen tells the story: "In the summer of 2011, during my cousin's pregnancy, we got a package from home, which was filled with various necessities for her puerperal period. Not long after that, one night, I had a dream. I am not the type of person who dreams very often. In the dream, two of my front teeth fell out with the teeth in my hand, unceasing tears flying away,  I recalled the doctor told me a couple of months ago in reality that if I didn't do a full examination of my left eye, and know what the problem is, I might lose my vision forever. So I started running, running, until the tears washed me back into the reality."


Still Life with Herb and Plastic Bag

"I would not have this project if I hadn't opened the package after I had the dream. When I was unsealing it, it wasn't the act of opening an almost smashed box, but the feeling that was unfolding my memories, all the emotions, happiness, past, sadness, all the connections that I had with my family and homeland. I wanted to break the geometry boundary between my small family in America and big family in my country. Adding the props from the house in the U.S. allows me to live in the imagination that we are still together, nothing can cut off the root, and we are tangled up as a family until it doesn't matter whether it is the transient moment or longer than that."




Stil Life with Hair, Garlic,Ginseng
All images © Xiang-Yun Chen

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