Ren Hang, controversial Chinese photographer, 1987–2017

© Ren Hang

Ren Hang, the Chinese erotic photographer, has died at the age of 29, Time reports. Hang first turned to photography while studying marketing at university in 2008, shooting his roommate naked. He went on to dedicate himself to the medium, provoking controversy and censorship in his country with soft pornographic nudes which featured individuals and groups of people – most often his friends, and over the past year, fans of the artist. 

Hang had been suffering from depression, often referred to in the poems he posted to his own website. In a post from last summer, he wrote: ‘If life is a bottomless abyss, when I jump, the endless fall will also be a form of flight.’

Hang has exhibited internationally and received the Outset Exhibition Fund at Unseen
Photography Festival last September. His work is currently on view at Foam, Amsterdam, through 12 March and his first monograph is being published by Taschen in March. 

27 February 2017