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Rancho Rodeo de la Aguas for "Love of Sun"

Since moving to the city of Los Angeles, my fascination with the paparazzi has led me to pursue an ongoing body of work that investigates themes around celebrity culture and the influences of the movie industry on the city. Utilizing paparazzi and street photography techniques, my practice investigates Hollywood culture on the streets of Los Angeles. For the past few years, I have been trying to understand and uncover the complexity of
Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills through photography and the medium’s unique relationship to Hollywood culture.

Rodeo Drive is a shopping district of designer labels, and haute couture fashion boutiques and shops that stretches three blocks long. It is also a localized yet international symbol of status and success. Rodeo symbolizes a commercial ‘paradise’ build around fame, luxury, wealth, and material culture for the ultra rich and famous.  It also functions as a major tourist destination in Los Angeles.  

Rancho Rodeo de la Aguas (Ranch of the Gathering Waters) is a site-specific photo series that attempts to map the site of Rodeo Drive through a selection of photographs.  This body of work plays with the concept and fluidity of water as a metaphor for the time & space of a body trafficking through the simulacrum of this site. Like the fluidity between production and consumption between China and California, of the luxury goods on sale and show there, bodies move unconsciously as the most abstract waters whose banks are defined by complex international economic relations and consumer desires.

My fascination extends to the implicit dynamics of Rodeo Drive’s international exchange and consumer culture. The import/export of products supports lifestyle and branding that expands international aesthetics to drive local and international traffic on this famous road. This phenomenon is especially poignant today – while many of these products have been produced in China for decades, a Chinese consumer market that can be likened to the Rodeo Drive fascination with luxury is a recent phenomenon.

China clearly has a strong impact on globalization between the United States’ production and distribution of high end products. In major Chinese cities the products and “aura” of Rodeo Drive are emulated by the nouveau riche populating streets like Shanghai’s Nanjing Lu. However, while many of these products are produced in China, they are less costly to the Rodeo Drive consumer than their Chinese counterpart. For example, my photo “Welcome to Rodeo Drive” pushes the idea that Rodeo Drive is, in Los Angeles, a function of Hollywood, whereas for China Rodeo Drive’s function is consumption. Understood this way, the image symbolize these alternate reading per culture.

The transcendental role of luxury and status in both societies is in a sense meant for paparazzi, whether in the traditional sense or in the form of the luxury consumer’s fantasy of self. Hence the popularity of Rodeo Drive for Chinese tourists – the cost of goods is lower than in China, and the aura of the street satisfies a collective fantasy of (Hollywood) celebrity glamour. This series attempts to understand and uncover the complexity of Rodeo Drive’s cultural and economic influences. Lately, its relation to Chinese production and consumption of luxury products is one of many insights that have surfaced from Rodeo Drive’s gathering cultural waters.




自从移居至洛杉矶,对狗仔现象的愈发痴迷让我从事了名流文化和电影产业对这座城市的影响为主旨的主体研究。利用狗仔伎俩和街拍技术,我开始研究洛杉矶街道上所展现的好莱坞文化。在过去的数年间,我不断的尝试通过街拍去理解和揭示比佛利山庄(Beverly Hills)罗迪欧大道(Rodeo Drive)所蕴含的复杂性和各种媒介与好莱坞文化间的特殊关系。


罗迪欧大道(Rodeo Drive)是一条由设计师品牌店和高级时装定制精品店所构成的、横跨三个街区的大道。同时它也是本地国际化地位和成就的标志。罗迪欧象征着由名望、奢华、财富和物质文化构筑而成的商业“天堂”,这里从不缺少富商名流。另外,它也是洛杉矶的主要旅游景点。


 Rancho Rodeo de la Aguas(汇集水流的农场,Ranch of the Gathering Waters是一组试图通过特定场地的拍摄来勾勒罗迪欧大道(Rodeo Drive)的系列照片。整个系列的拍摄理念是以水的流动性来隐喻人群在时空中川流于罗迪欧大道(Rodeo Drive)的影像。这里奢侈品展示与销售之间的流动性,也体现在中国制造与加州消费之间。而人们,则像是抽象意义下的水,在做着无意识的流动。与之相应的堤岸则是复杂的国际经济关系和消费欲望。


于是,我的兴趣延展至了探索罗迪欧大道(Rodeo Drive)所展现出的国际交流与消费文化的隐性动态关系。带有生活方式及品牌印记的商品的进出口将国际审美延展至此,也助长了这条享誉国际的大道在本地以及海外的人气。现如今,这一现象则具有这更深刻的意义,虽然近几十年来罗迪欧大道(Rodeo Drive)出售的商品大多是中国制造,但中国的消费市场被其奢华魅力所吸引却是新近现象。


中美两国在高端商品制造和分销的全球化上对彼此的影响不可小觑。在中国的主流城市,罗迪欧大道(Rodeo Drive)及其因售卖高端产品而产生的光环被很多新兴商业街所模仿,上海的南京路就是一个很好的例证。但是,虽然很多商品都是在中国被制造的,消费者却可以在罗迪欧大道(Rodeo Drive)享有更优惠的价格。举个例子来展现这背后不同的价值体系,我创作的摄影系列“欢迎来到罗迪欧大道(Rodeo Drive)”旨在表达位于洛杉矶的罗迪欧大道(Rodeo Drive)是好莱坞的产物,而对于中国来说罗迪欧大道(Rodeo Drive)则是为消费而生。如此理解,这些摄影作品被解读的方式体现了解读者所遵从的文化价值体系。


奢侈与地位在中美两种社会体系中却扮演了跨越地域的角色,仿佛都是为了狗仔文化而存在,无论是在传统理念中亦或是在奢侈品消费者自身所塑造幻想意识形态中。因此,罗迪欧大道(Rodeo Drive)的对于中国游客的高吸引力绝非偶然。在这里,不仅可以用相对更为低廉的价格购买到高端奢侈品,也可以直接的满足他们对于好莱坞名人魅力的集体幻想。在这组摄影系列试图理解及揭示罗迪欧大道(Rodeo Drive)的文化及经济影响力的大背景下,衍生出了诸多的洞察,而中国对于奢侈品的制造及消费与罗迪欧大道(Rodeo Drive)的动态关系,便是其中之一。