the whiteness of a whale
the whiteness of a whale
A project with The Institute of Critical Zoologists
16 images, 28 pages
17 x 24 cm
The Institute of Critical Zoologists is pleased to present, The whiteness of a whale by Zhao Renhui and Satoshi Kataoka.
The title of this project is taken from an earlier work undertaken by Satoshi Kataoka to research and compile the numerous white whale sightings by The Whale People of Omishima between 1937 to 2008. The majority of the sightings were recorded after 1982.
During a residency at Fukuoka Asian Art Museum, Zhao Renhui was able to research the archives and interview the last remaining descendant of The Whale People. During the residency, he produced a series of documents and images for The Institute of Critical Zoologists discussing the political and cultural representations of this group of people.
This project is a compilation of their research, documents and interviews, produced in collaboration with The Institute of Critical Zoologists. It offers a unique perspective into the unwritten history of The Whale People of Omishima.
edition of 600
ROBERT ZHAO RENHUI
Robert Zhao Renhui is constantly fascinated with Singaporeans’ controlled coexistence with nature, and his practice is drawn from observations and research inspired by his genuine curiosity about how man interacts with the natural world. He creates photos with a documentary approach, constructing and layering the subject with narratives that cross the boundary between the real and the fictional, creating doubt in the viewer about the image’s authenticity. Robert’s work raises questions about both our fascination with controlling nature and how our reception of a photograph can be manipulated by its presentation. Robert graduated with a Masters (with Distinction) in Photography, Graduate Scholarship Programme from the London College of Communication, London, United Kingdom in 2010 and a BA in Photography from the Camberwell College of the Arts, University of the Arts, London, United Kingdom. Some of his selected solo exhibitions include Final Report of the Christmas Island Expert Working Group, NTU Centre for Contemporary Art, Singapore (2018), Christmas Island, Naturally, ShanghART M50, Shanghai, China (2017), Singapore, Very Old Tree, National Museum of Singapore, Singapore (2017), A Guide to the Flora and Fauna of the World, Centre of Contemporary, Photography, Melbourne, Australia (2015), and Flies Prefer Yellow, Kadist Art Foundaton, San Francisco, California, USA (2014) amongst many others. He has also participated in group exhibitions extensively both locally and internationally such as Singapore, Indonesia, Philippines, South Korea, France, Russia, China, Hong Kong, Poland, United States, Australia, Brazil, United Kingdom, Netherlands, and Albania. His works are in the collection of the National Museum of Singapore, Singapore, UBS Art Collection, UBS Global, Statoil Art Collection, Stavanger, Norway, Kadist Art Foundaton, San Francisco, USA UOB Art Collecton, Singapore, and Singapore Art Museum, Singapore. Robert lives and works in Singapore.