‘Made In China,’ a photography exhibit by Zhan You Bing

JOHNSTOWN — Every day we shop for, handle, and use products made by people working in factories thousands of miles away in China. “Made In China” is an exhibition of photographs by Zhan You Bing that document the lives of Chinese factory workers who produce the merchandise Americans consume.

Zhan You Bing was born in 1973 in a rural village in Hubei Province, China. At age 19, he enlisted in the army. When he retired from active military service in 1995, Zhan You Bing became one of the hundreds of thousands of Chinese rural migrants who leave their families every year to find work in urban manufacturing centers. For many years Zhan You Bing worked as a security guard in factories and hotels in Dongguan City, sending money home to his parents, wife and son in Hubei.

In 2006, working as an insider, Zhan You Bing began documenting fellow workers on and off the job. Over the past decade he has shot more than 400,000 digital images, comprising the largest visual portrait of Chinese factory workers that exists. “Made In China” presents a sampling of 30 prints from this expansive archive, offering Americans an eye-opening look at the people who work on the other end of the global supply chain making the things that fill our shopping carts.

The exhibit will be available for viewing at Fulton-Montgomery Community College’s Perrella Gallery until Oct. 13.

Zhan You Bing lives in Dongguan as an artist and photographer. He is no longer a migrant worker but a registered resident, and his family has joined him there. His photographs have been exhibited throughout China and appear in print and online journals including Southern Weekly, Chinese Photograph, Asahi Shimbun and on NBC and CNN.

“Made In China” is loaned and administered by the Weeks Gallery at Jamestown Community College.

For more information call Joel Chapin, Fine Arts Professor and Gallery Director at (518) 736-3622, Ext 8977.

Gallery hours are Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. with extended hours until 9 p.m. on Wednesday or by appointment; closed weekends and holidays.