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Humanism in China

openDemocracy Opendemocracy
7 May 2007

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Liu Jianming (February 1989), Yuanjiang, Yunnan "An old man, who calls himself 'the people's calligrapher', signs everywhere." © fotoe.com

"Humanism in China" is an exhibition of 590 photographs, presented by the Guangdong Museum of Art in Guangzhou. Sketching a broad panorama of the life of people in China the exhibition also represents a survey of Chinese documentary photography of the last five decades of the 20th century.

Divided into four categories - existence, relations, desire, time - the photos portray everyday Chinese life against the background of social revolutions. Going beyond the surface effects of recent economic success in China's major cities, the photographers have set out to document the impact of the country's increasing modernisation upon the individual.

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Feng Jianxin (Winter 1987), Weichang, Hebei "A soldier bids farewell to his wife and child who have just visited him and are now returning home." © fotoe.com

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Wang Chongyan (2002), Daqing, Heilongjiang "A woman on death row hopes the verdict might change." © fotoe.com

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Hao Junchen (2003), Beijing"An old man holding a picture of his late wife, fulfilling the couple's joint dream of traveling to Beijing." © fotoe.com

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