Xu Xixian (born 1942 in Shanghai) worked as a rice seller until 2009. He began to take photographs in his free time in the 1960s.
As well as the centre of Shanghai, he also captured the surrounding villages that gradually had to give way to the expanding city's new housing developments. Today, the photographer's archive encompasses around 40.000 black and white negatives.
Xu Xixian's images bear witness to Shanghai's rapid transformation, resulting in a unique documentary on the Chinese metropolis. Taking Shanghai as an example of accelerated urban development, the exhibition addresses the entire country's recent history.
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