With his vintage Leica and accompanied by a young translator named Lolly Pop, American photographer Danny Lyon traveled across Shanxi Province in northeast China six times between 2005 and 2009. The result of which is an extraordinary portrait of China, one seldom seen by foreigners.
Shanxi was once the Middle Kingdom and its border to the north with Inner Mongolia is marked by the Great Wall and Fire Towers. Lyon’s China is a portrait of what is gone, not just in China but in all of the advanced world. Almost nothing of this century’s technological advances are visible in Lyon’s photographs. A homage to Lyon’s own childhood in 1950s America and a China that is quickly vanishing, this portrayal reveals a uniquely personal and human perspective. Eighty-five black and white photographs are accompanied by the photographer’s own writings, handwritten notes and travel ephemera, including business cards, scrap papers, taxi receipts and tickets.