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Shenzhen Economic Daily Interview, 2007 (b)

From a structural or theoretical standpoint, I think that China does not at present have a clear sense of what constitutes the actual history of photography in China. On the one hand, this has a certain liberating effect, leaving photographers and artists seemingly beholden to no particular traditions. On the other hand, it leaves them rootless and disconnected from the past and their own culture’s photographic history. […]

PRC Founder’s Talk (3)

I mourn the closing of Views, not only (or even primarily) because I was its founding editor and felt a parental relationship to it but because that journal, and a baker’s dozen like it, have proven essential to the recent literature of photography. They provide the historical trace of what’s gone on in various parts of the country, they serve as testing grounds for younger writers and editors, and they function as stages for thoughtful commentary from all of us. […]

Lucies Underground, with Diamonds (1)

At some point in the Oughts I started to question the assumption that a “photography community” existed, at present or in the past. If it did, I should have found it possible to identify actions undertaken by that community as such, locales at which it gathered regularly for informal social interaction, and other indicators of the existence of genuine communal spirit and commitment. Sad fact was, I couldn’t come up with much. […]