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PRC's photographic exhibition opens in North America

[ 2010-03-24 11:49]     字号 [] [] []  
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One photograph from 1958 depicts laughing students perched on a rooftop with long sticks, swinging at the sparrows that threatened Beijing's food supplies at the time. Another image is of a militiaman with a gun balanced on a prone horse in 1965, arms and eyes steady with a grass field and cloudless sky stretching far behind him.

In a celebration of China's most iconic images over six often-tumultuous decades, a photography exhibition sponsored by China Daily and AKD International on tour in Canada and the US eschewed images of high-ranking leaders to showcase these ordinary lives.

"China is just like any other country, with ordinary people," said Dr. Francis Pang, chairman of AKD, an education consortium. "China often gets reported in very extreme ways - either very positive, or very negative. But what about real life? What about ordinary people?"

Guests, including parliament member Albina Guarnieri and Lu Kun, deputy consul-general of the Chinese consulate in Toronto, gathered at the Chinese Cultural Center of Greater Toronto on Monday for a reception to mark the opening of the exhibition, which displayed 100 of the 362 photographs released in last year's China's Renowned Photographers Focus on China album. The book and exhibition are a gift from China Daily to its motherland.

"Change can be seen everywhere in China, from rising skyscrapers to roads and broadband that have extended into every county across the land," said Gao Anming, secretary-general of China Daily. "However, the biggest transformation is reflected in the changes of customs and the lifestyles of ordinary people."

"These photographs are a kaleidoscope of what China was and is," said Lu in prepared remarks before the ribbon cutting ceremony. "Through these images we can know those changes."

Assembled over two months by Pang, executive director of AKD Andy H. Truong and the China Daily team, the black and white photos were displayed in stacked rows in chronological order beginning in 1949. The captions were kept brief in the hope that the images would speak for themselves, Gao said.

As the photographs moved forward in time, outside influences and modern developments began to appear. In one photograph from 1992, a Western woman crouched over a pool table in Shaanxi province as a crowd of Chinese men waited to see whether she would make the shot. In another from 1996, a Western couple stood in the shade of the Great Wall as a laughing elderly Chinese couple mirrored them on the other side of a stone arch, the woman's bound feet in tiny black shoes.

Guarnieri's favorite photograph was a 1985 image in which a migrant worker squatted in the doorway of a Shaanxi canteen, dozens of plates and bowls strung above him to dry, she said.

"Even though the photographs are in black and white, they depict China in such color," Guarnieri said. "What you see is China's indomitable spirit and the strength of its people."


1. Who is sponsoring the photo exhibit?

2. What period do the photos cover?

3. What do the photographs show?


1. China Daily and AKD International.

2. 1949 to present.

3. Ordinary Chinese people.


(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

PRC's photographic exhibition opens in North America

About the broadcaster:

PRC's photographic exhibition opens in North America

Nelly Min is an editor at China Daily with more than 10 years of experience as a newspaper editor and photographer. She has worked at major newspapers in the U.S., including the Los Angeles Times and the Detroit Free Press. She is fluent in Korean and has a 2-year-old son.