In 2011, the touring exhibition 100 Vintage Prints introduced the collection of Charles Jing’s 20th Century Works of Western Photographers to China and the US. Since then
Jing’s collection has grown exponentially from 300 items to 2000 items, including many works of Contemporary Chinese Photography, making him the leading collector of photography in China.
Melissa DeWitt: How did you become interested in photography?
Charles Jing: When I was young I was a Chinese Army photographer. I went to war in Vietnam. After military service I worked at Shanghai Pictorial Magazine as an executive photo editor, then in 1989 I came to the US for a masters degree in photography. I graduated in 1992 from the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA). The same school as Jeff Koons.
After graduation, life was difficult and there were no jobs to fit my fine art major, so I moved to Memphis in the South where I