54 Colours of Yangtse (2019)

The Yangtze in China ranks first in the world’s dirtiest water bodies.

I’m interested in the effect of this pollution on the perceptible, visible spectrum of the colours of water, which I can collect at the Yangtze.

The watercolours that I collect on the Yangtze have the same colour biologically. In our perception, however, the water appears blue, grey, greenish, yellowish, green, yellow or brown. The colour is “mixed” by reflection, light, the angle of the Sun, the depth of the sea, the disturbances or movements of water, microbiological particles, the clouding of the sky, the distance and perspective of the observer to the surface of the water and by the perception of the viewer herself. I wanted to collect these colours and document them with their “recipes.” I photographed the river water from the same perspective, always at the same distance from the water surface and always with the same camera settings.

This is how a colour spectrum was created which shows the range of Yangtze’s colours found one day. Thus, I created a colour archive, a colour spectrum of the world’s “dirtiest” water body.