Ad Campaign, Shot By Chen Man, Features Model Hu Bing And Actress Lin Zhiling
This week, the Richemont-owned Hong Kong brand Shanghai Tang debuted the ad campaign for its “From China With Love” Fall/Winter 2011 collection. The ad campaign, shot by Beijing-based photographer Chen Man — whose work is also being shown this month in Shanghai’s “Absolut Blank” exhibition — features actor and model Hu Bing and the Taiwanese actress Lin Zhiling exploring some of the Chinese capital’s most well-known sights, from Qianmen to the Temple of Heaven. In the campaign, Hu and Lin are cast as two sophisticated, urban lovers trying to escape the hustle and bustle of modern Beijing by rediscovering the city’s historical past and ancient culture, two things that have fallen by the wayside in the city’s rush towards modernization.
As a Beijing native, photographer Chen Man’s deep understanding and feel for the city is obvious in the campaign, as Chen artfully integrates China’s economic boom with its shifting social and cultural landscapes. Noticeably more muted in color scheme than Shanghai Tang’s S/S 2011 campaign, which featured vibrant blues and greens inspired by southern China’s Miao minority, “From China With Love” internalizes and reinterprets the concrete monochrome of a Beijing hutong.
Indicating Shanghai Tang’s expectations for the mainland China market, where the label currently operates around 15 locations, the “From China With Love” campaign marks the first time Shanghai Tang has tapped a mainland Chinese celebrity, in this case Hu Bing, as a spokesperson.
Mirroring the ad campaign, Shanghai Tang’s “From China With Love” F/W 2011 collection attempts to re-interpret traditional Chinese aesthetics while giving them a trademark twist. The women’s collection is divided into three lines — Treasure Chest, Metamorphosis and Urban Warriors — while the men’s collection features Treasure Chest, Urban Warriors and Evening. With looks ranging from suited-up formality to billowing casualwear, the new collection is both grounded in the past and inspired by the dramatic cultural and societal shifts currently reshaping China’s more cosmopolitan urban centers.