Category Archives: photography

[Photography] Africans pursuing the Chinese Dream in Guangzhou

As every summer for the last 5 years, media comes again with a story of how Africans pursue their dream in the southern Megalopolis of Guangzhou.

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Beginning in May, Liang Yingfei spent four months photographing Xiaobei Road in Guangzhou, which houses the largest African community in China. A series published in three parts, the first parts focuses on Serges de la Roche, who goes by the Chinese nickname Xiaolong (Little Dragon). A Togolese businessman who has lived in China for nearly 10 years, Xiaolong has been selling a wide variety of goods—from diesel generators to gadgets—to customers in Africa. Due to the increased difficulty in obtaining a Chinese visa, he was planning to return to Togo with his Chinese wife and their two Chinese-born children. The second part of Liang’s series looks at the effect of China’s recent economic slowdown on African businesspeople and students in Guangzhou, while the final part is a collection of portraits of Africans in Guangzhou

[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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[Research] Cfp: Migration, culture, identity and scholarship: the role of the ‘arts’ in Sino-African engagements – Nairobi 2016

Call for papers for a panel on ‘Migration, culture, identity and scholarship: the role of the ‘arts’ in Sino-African engagements’

Panel chair: Roberto Castillo, University of Hong Kong, Email: rocas@hku.hk

From film and photography to painting, sculpture, music and martial arts, current Sino-African cultural exchanges involve a diverse range of practices. Without a doubt, contemporary intersections between traders, transmigrants, artists, scholars and media practitioners have altered (and possibly allowed for reconfigurations of) cultural panoramas in both China and Africa. As the exchanges between people in these regions are on the rise, this panel calls for the examination of both the historical and contemporary reconfigurations (i.e. adaptations, innovations, reinterpretations) of certain cultural practices and the possibilities that they offer. Currently, a number of scholars are working on issues related to the ‘cultural aspects’ of Sino-African engagements. By focusing on these aspects, this panel would draw attention to the complex intersectionality of migration, culture, diaspora, identity and representation. Indeed, one of the main questions the panel would examine is: How are contemporary Sino-African cultural exchanges impacting on traditional cultural, national, and ethno-nationally based identities? The panel welcomes multidisciplinary discussion of the above-mentioned issues through the lenses of cultural exchanges, cross-cultural perception/representation, cultural diplomacy, and soft power, but is not restricted to these perspectives/themes.

Submit to: NairobiCAAC2016@gmail.com.

Important dates:

Paper Abstracts Due: 29 February 2016

Notification of Participation: 4 March 2016

Draft Papers Due: 1 August 2016

Symposium & Public Seminar: 17-18 August 2016

Conference dates: 18-20 August 2016

[Photography] Daniel Traub’s ‘Little Road North’小北路 #SinoAfrica

For background discussions on this project read here, here, here and here – 还有这里

[(艺术?)摄影] 一个美国摄影师在广州记录了他眼中的“非洲城”

乐乐, 乐乐呗llbei.com

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美国摄影师 Daniel Traub 于 2009 年因为研究生项目来到中国,他的母亲是中国人,对于中国他有一种陌生又亲切的感觉,他通过摄影来理解和记录这个正在巨变中的国家:城市与乡村并存,发展与落后相关。距离有时候很小,一个高尔夫球场可能紧挨着一个垃圾场。

他拍过北京上海的一些地方,后来来到广州,广州越秀区小北路的黑人聚居区让他停留下来,一个城市里其他民族的聚居区多少还是有点少见,他在城市穿梭时,也试图用镜头记录下更多。

广州的小北淘金地区是一个多面的典型,喜欢美食的人可以在这里找到各国美食,阿拉伯餐馆、墨西哥风味、法式餐厅等等应有尽有,更别提越来越普及的日韩料理了。在广州的外国人可以来这里找到家乡风味,价格较高但是风味正宗。不过在区内还有很多没那么光鲜的地方,仅仅满足生活需要,那里是很多来自非洲的人们的活动区。

从 2000 年起,很多批发商从非洲来到中国,除了电视上报道的中非合作的大企业和国家项目,他们也是中国和非洲的贸易往来的见证人。

小北路店铺林立,有中国商人也有非洲商人,各种各样的商品都有,布匹、家用电器、假发等等,还有菜市场。讨价还价的声音也有,还有一些棚铺和中国清真餐馆和一些旅行社。熟悉的话可以迅速在各种小店之间找到性价比最高的店,买到所需的物品。

在 Daniel Traub 即将出版的新书 Little North Road (《小北路》)里,有他自己拍摄的大量照片,也有两位中国“摄影师”拍摄的照片,他们是吴永福和曾宪芳。这两个人专门在小北路的天桥上给人拍照,大多数是非洲人,这些照片拍完之后用塑料包装,可以给人带回去作为纪念,也可以让久居中国的非洲人寄给家人。吴永福 30 来岁,从江西来到广州,Daniel Traub 在 2009 年遇到了他,他同意提供一些素材给 Daniel Traub。之后 Daniel Traub 又遇到另一位“摄影师”曾宪芳,曾是吴的妻子的亲戚,他从湖南来到广州。

VICE 曾为 Daniel Traub 的小北路黑人社区摄影项目拍摄过一个纪录片。在视频中他提到曾宪芳的拍摄更多是生意,拍完照片之后很快就会删掉,Daniel 觉得可惜,于是就会买硬盘给他来存储这些照片。

Daniel 通常在人们不注意的时候按下快门,吴永福和曾宪芳的照片则是摆拍,有时被拍者还会指导摄影师如何拍摄,因为他们是“顾客”。

VICE 纪录片:Daniel Traub 的广州小北路黑人社区摄影项目

在这些“非洲城”的一个个片段中,天桥扮演了一个很特别的角色:“它扯下了城市的面纱,一时间,一些日常的迫切需要和忧虑突然出现。”摄影师 Daniel Traub 在他的书的序言中这样写道。《小北路》这本书不久前由德国 Kehrer Verlag 出版社出版。定价 50 美元,限量版是 350 美元,收藏版是 970 美元。

[继续阅读在这里]