A Distorted View


During a return trip to Xiamen, China in 2015, Josie made some work on paper which were shown in an exhibition titled 'A Distorted View' at Nothing Gallery in Xiamen.

Xiamen, also historically known as Amoy, is a major city on the southeast coast of China in Fujian province, with a population of over 3,500,000. Xiamen is a popular domestic tourist destination, famous for its attractive seascape, university grounds, botanical gardens and the neighbouring islet of Gulangyu. China's loss in the First Opium War and the Treaty of Nanking in 1842 resulted in Xiamen becoming a treaty port. Soon after, foreign residents on the island of Gulangyu established an informal organisation that became formally organised several decades later. Eventually 13 countries, including Great Britain, France, The Netherlands and Japan, were to enjoy extraterritorial privileges there and take part in the Municipal Council that administered the settlement. As with the Shanghai International Settlement, the British played a predominant role in the administration and Sikh policemen from British India were charged with the policing of the Settlement.

The buildings, including consulates, churches, hospitals, schools and police stations, built by those foreign communities explain the predominantly Victorian-era style architecture that can still be seen throughout Gulangyu.

The ink drawings that Josie made on the island begin to examine her conflicting feelings of, unease, longing, confusion and romance, for China, Xiamen and the enchanting Gulangyu.

You can read about Josie's experience in Xiamen and Gulangyu on her blog, starting here https://www.a-n.co.uk/blogs/skygroundbeing/date/2015/11