The Photographic Journal

Rural / 鄉村

Essay 473 • Dec 6th 2020

The Rural Zone of China, laden with stigmas and ancient traditions, perpetuates communities that suffer a rural, social and economic exodus. Mass immigration to large cities leaves an infinite and rare beauty in the small rural communities of the country. Remnants of a people that stopped in time, forgotten by decades of isolation, dynasties, and that now lives the great verticalization and urbanization of the country. It is believed that in the last decades, more than 920 thousand villages have disappeared in the country.

“Rural/鄉村” is the peasant, the memory of a people in constant migration and disappearance in mainland China. It is the reflection of a society in constant ebullition, deconstructing all the past in the name of a “New China”. An anachronistic painting to the present day, eternalized through the constant and ephemeral past in photography.


Gustavo Gusmão is a photographer currently based in São Paulo, Brasil. A native of São Paulo, he completed his Master’s degree in documentary filmmaking from the Autonomous University of Barcelona. In his spare time, he likes to travel and photograph around the world. Past locations include China, India, Nepal, Indonesia, Cambodia, Thailand and the Philippines. His photos invoke the emotional relationship between people and their environments.<
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