Canton (Guangzhou), Kwangtung province, China: two Cantonese boat women,. Photograph by John Thomson, 1869.
- Thomson, J. (John), 1837-1921.
Selected images from this work
About this work
Two women looking at one another, the younger one with her hair in an elaborate plait, the other older with a plainer hairstyle. Both wear dark robes of coarse woven material. Mother and daughter?
Until the 1950s many people in Guangzhou, also in Hong Kong, lived on boats. For the poor, boats provided a more comfortable way of living and also a source of regular income. Boat people also enjoyed more freedom, using the boat as their means of transport. Often a boat was occupied by an entire family. In this photograph the intention was to highlight the glossy black hair and the olive skins of working-class Chinese women, which the photographer John Thomson found particularly attractive
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