This day in age, many countries and regions are forming photo biennials, triennials, and international photo festivals to promote traditional and contemporary art photography while spurring on the economic and cultural development of the areas in which they are held. The internationally renowned “Les Rencontres d’Arles” already has an illustrious history and has developed its own unique style and model. Furthermore, it continues to strive for change amidst today’s global economic and cultural transformation.

Jimei x Arles emerges precisely from the convergent needs of both this specialized discipline and the broader public. Xiamen possesses a truly unique cumulative cultural heritage and history of overseas interaction and exchange. Jimei x Arles aims to have a widespread effect upon culture in its neighboring countries and regions, as well as that of the global characteristics of contemporary photography, which originated in Europe.

Jimei is a famed port and tourist destination of China’s Southeastern coastal region — one of Xiamen’s administrative areas, it has been dubbed “The Garden on the Sea” and a resplendent pearl. Bursting with culture and exquisite scenery, it is the hometown of patriotic hero Chen Jiageng, once called “the banner of overseas Chinese; glory of the nation” by Chairman Mao Zedong. Chen Jiageng founded the Jimei School Village, which now boasts over a hundred years of history, 12 universities and colleges, tens of thousands of teachers and students. It is a cultural and educational area that enjoys widespread renown. Jimei prides itself on convenient transportation, a flourishing economy, and magnificent natural surroundings. It is comprised of software/information technology services, mechanized equipment production, business and commercial tourism, as well as the leading cultural performing arts industry. Life for those in Jimei is peaceful and content, happy and harmonious.

Jimei x Arles International Photo Festival will rely upon Les Rencontres d’Arles’ extensive international exhibition expertise and content, while incorporating Three Shadows Photography Art Centre’s comparable Asian and Chinese exhibition expertise and content, all strategically situated within Jimei district’s newly developed arts & culture estate. These elements will be synthesized with local civic and cultural resources to create China’s best international photo festival, bringing Jimei into the international public sphere and encouraging the expansion of its cultural industry.

Jimei x Arles International Photo Festival is supported by Xiamen, Jimei district and organized by Three Shadows Photography Art Centre. Jimei x Arles International Photo Festival was jointly initiated by Sam Stourdze, Director of Les Rencontresd’Arles, and RongRong, Founder of Three Shadows Photography Art Centre. Independent curator Li Zhenhua will serve as Artistic Director of the event.

Jimei x Arles International Photo Festival is thematically divided as follows: International Trends in Photography, Encounter the East, Fashion & Photography, City Navigation, Double Nostalgia, Local Action, Extended Photography, Audio Visual, and Prize & Collection. The festival will encompass more than ten countries and regions, over a hundred photographers from China and abroad, and over a thousand photographs.

Artron Art Centre and Modern Media are the offical partnerships of "Jimei x Arles Encounters The East & West International Photo Festival".

The 2015 Jimei x Arles Discovery Award was attributed to photographer Zhu Lanqing.