Steven Harris has been a resident of China since the 1990s, first living in Beijing and later moving to Shanghai in 2003. Steven studied photography and journalism at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and did his minor studies in Chinese as well as being an exchange student at Beijing Normal University and Qinghua University in the 1990s.
Having worked in various sectors of the photography industry over the past 15 years, Steven decided early on that a photograph was best experienced in person, on paper. In this age of ubiquitous images and the hyper commercialisation of photography itself, it was the distillation process of experiencing photography in person, as an art form, that motivated him to open M97, one of China’s first and largest dedicated platforms for art photography. Steven is often invited to participate in conferences and festivals as an expert in Chinese contemporary photography and regularly speaks on Chinese photography as well as participating in portfolio reviews. Motivated by his commitment to the longevity of photographic works of art, Steven has also brought to Shanghai international standards for the presentation and preservation of photographs.
M97 Gallery has received several awards such as “Best Photo Gallery in China” and Steven has been voted “Best Photography Gallerist” by Chinese media (2011).