Shanghai Demo Crew

By: Gustav Hoiland

Feb 24 2010

Category: china

Leave a comment

Focal Length:18mm
Shutter:1/0 sec
Camera:NIKON D80


This is all over the place in Shanghai.  Old apartment blocks getting demolished, probably making way for glassy condo towers that are dominating more and more of the skyline.  Unlike American construction sites… there’s no security, no fences or boundaries, nothing really. Dozens of people forage through the rubble, searching for salvageable metals and other materials.  Entire city blocks, really on every side of where this photo was shot, were reduced piles of broken buildings.  I walked up one such pile, probably 20 ft high of bricks and chunks of who knows what to shoot, and besides the usual stares I got from being white and tall, nobody really batted an eye.

Photographically, I really like this shot.  There’s a grimness to it.  There’s a lot of chaotic stuff, from the strewn cinder blocks in the foreground to the clouds of dust that conceals the background, all due to these huge machines just picking apart a structure.  Those flags!  What’s happening with them? I think they might actually have been the the security boundary for the site… just faded little plastic flags kind of flapping in the winds of destruction.

I also like the contrast between the kind of dead nature here and the man-made obsolescence that is being destroyed.  Some dead (perhaps out of season) tree branch coming down from the top and some branches coming up from the very bottom.  They just seem so helpless compared to what’s around them.  Then again,  they’ve persevered for as long as they have within this environment, and in the absence of humans, they’d eventually take over it all.

Ahhhh, bike rides in Shanghai… this is the kind of stuff you see.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: