[Photography] Portraits of Africans in Guangzhou capture what may be the last days of China’s “Chocolate City”

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By Daniel Traub for Quartz Africa

On a pedestrian bridge in Guangzhou, on a summer evening in 2009, I came upon Wu Yong Fu—a man in his early thirties who worked on the bridge. Cradled in his left hand was a simple digital camera; his right hand held a placard made up of various photographic portraits laminated in plastic. As people walked by, he would sidle up and cajole them to have their picture taken. Wu emanated a kind of wistful charm that served him well for attracting customers.

This was not my first time on the bridge. In 2005, while photographing in Guangzhou, I came upon an area known as Xiaobeilu (Little North Road). Its crumbling old structures abutted modern glassy towers, while its narrow alleys bordered a vast, elevated highway system. The pedestrian bridge allowed safe passage over the arterial road that ran through the area. Wanting the highest perspective possible, I walked up the stairs onto the bridge. An immediate sense of openness, light and expanse could be felt. [Keep reading here]

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