Chinese photographer Ren Hang has died, a representative of Klein Sun Gallery confirmed to Creators earlier this morning. Hang's unique arrangements of nude models, usually his friends, conveyed a casual eroticism that often earned him censure from the Chinese government, including his arrest.
"Ren is a poet and photographer," Klein Sun described the artist in a release for his May, 2016 solo show at their Chelsea location. "Splicing imagery of urban and rural environments as a metaphor for the increasingly citified millennials of today, he arranges the naked limbs of his friends in his hide-and-seek photographs. In these images, the subjects' expressions are casual yet provocative, hinting at the erotic and playful energies between Ren Hang and his intimate circle of companions."
"Today we mourn the loss of Ren Hang, a talented and rising young photographer who passed away well before his time," Eli Klein wrote on Instagram this morning. "@kleinsungallery was honored to host his solo exhibition last year and send our heartfelt condolences to all of his loved ones."
Dutch publication De Morgen claims that Hang's death was a suicide, based on comments from "entourage sources," but sources have yet to confirm. He was 29.
Creators has reached out to his gallerist for further information and will update this post when it comes in. Watch VICE Japan's documentary on the artist, and take a look at Hang's Athens Love (2016) series, below.
See more of Ren Hang's work on Instagram.