This photographic reportage shows the nocturnal identity of Lilong. In this nieghborhood of Shanghai, build between 1850 and 1950, time has stopped. In 1854, the Chinese empire signed an agreement with the Europeans present in the concessions, asking them to build quickly many housing because a large part of the city has been destroyed by a revolt. Those ones accepted the request wich allows them to extend their influence. Thereby a lot of neighborhopds have been build. They used Chinese building technics like the arrangement of the rooms or the presence of a courtyard. But organized according to an occidental neighborhoods like the promiscuity and the narrowness of the streets matching a need to rationalize the space, in order to build more and at a lesser cost. Today the modern world activates all around. The constrast struck me. In my way way through this dark back street maze, the rare artificial lights offered me, in a frontal approach the intimacy of the inhabitants, the passersbys, and merchants of the night. Most of the "Shikumens" have their doors open. In those torrid houses in summer and frigid in winter, cohabit several families of several generations. During the multiple nights spending at getting lost, observing, listening and feel the energy of this neighborhood, I was struck by the ambiant calm, far from the stereotype I have seen from the Chinese megapolis. The pictures have been taken in three nights in December. In order to have a proximity approach with the people I met, I choose to use only my 50mm lens. My photographic work attempt to transcribe this intimacy atmosphere encounter in my nocturnal wanderings.
Copyright © 2016 Mickaël ZERMATI