The Poverty Line Book Launch: artists Chow and Lin in conversation with Ou Ning




Poster Designed by Sixuan Tong


Poverty, in its universality, seems intuitively understandable and yet, as a global issue, its solutions remain difficult to grasp.

What does it mean to live on the poverty line? What does this fateful line below which the economic world describes people as "poor" represent? The artist duo Chow and Lin explored these questions by creating this visual comparison that encapsulates an idea of poverty and its worldwide dimensions with regard to food. The photographs show what people in 36 countries and territories can afford to buy at local markets from the sum of money that defines the official poverty line – as assessed per person, per day.

Published by Actes Sud (French) and Lars Müller Publishers (English), 2021

Join us on Friday, Oct 27, 2023 for The Poverty Line book launch event at Bungee Space. 
Chow and Lin, the authors of The Poverty Line, will be in conversation with Ou Ning. 

This event is FREE to the public, please RSVP using the form below.


With contributions by Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana, Andrea Brandolini, Lucas Chancel, John Micklewright
Design: Sandra van der Doelen, Teun van der Heijden
22 × 29 cm, 8 ¾ × 11 ½ in
432 pages, 368 illustrations
2021, 978-3-03778-673-4, English

The book was awarded the 2019 LUMA Rencontres Dummy Book Award, and selected for MoMA’s inaugural list of favorite photobooks of 2021. Works from the series are currently exhibited at MoMA Collections Gallery 216: Systems. 

About Chow and Lin 

The crux of Chow and Lin’s practice lies in their methodology of statistical, mathematical, and computational techniques to address global issues since 2010. Chow and Lin’s projects are driven by the discursive backgrounds in economics, public policy, media, and these are further augmented by enduring exchanges with specialists from those fields.
Their projects have been exhibited at Arles Les Rencontres De La Photographie, Art Museum of Guangzhou Academy of Fine Art, Venice Arte Laguna, Houston FotoFest Biennial, National University of Singapore Museum and were invited to present at the United Nations Conference Centre in Bangkok. Their works are in the permanent collections of The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) and China Central Academy of Fine Arts Museum. They are authors of The Poverty Line (published by Actes Sud and Lars Muller, 2021).

Stefen Chow and Huiyi Lin (b. Malaysia / Singapore) currently reside in Beijing, China. 

About Ou Ning
Ou Ning is the director of the documentaries San Yuan Li (2003) and Meishi Street (2006); chief curator of the Shenzhen & Hong Kong Bi-city Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (2009); jury member of 8th Benesse Prize at 53rd Venice Biennale (2009); member of the Asian Art Council at the Guggenheim Museum (2011); founding chief editor of the literary journal Chutzpah!(2010-2014); founder of the Bishan Project (2011-2016); a visiting professor at Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation (2016-2017); and a senior research fellow of the Center for Arts, Design, and Social Research in Boston (2019-2023).