The group 'Bei He Meng' (North River Alliance) was an unofficial group of photographers developed in the summer of 1986 and aimed to breakthrough the traditional or official visual language of photography. The exhibition showcased ten artists and more than forty works in total.
The local authorities came to inspect the works during installation and asked to remove two photographs taken by Wang Yaodong and Gu Zheng. Wang's photo showed a blurred woman's face behind a wire mesh while Gu's showed the silhouettes of a mother and a child next to the silhouette of Chairman Mao's statue at the entrance of the Beijing Military Museum. Despite the original intentions of the photographs, the authorities believed that the photographs had other radical and hostile implications. To Wang and Gu, this incident was their first direct interference on artists and art enthusiasts. The leaders of the Shanghai Photographers' Association were also opposed to the exhibition, but Mr. Zhu Zhonghua, director of the Association's Theoretical Study Department, encouraged the group through his notes in the exhibition guestbook.