Documentary photographer William E. Crawford was one of the first Western photographers to gain access to post-war North Vietnam after the war ended, in 1985. He has photographed the capital, Hanoi, at regular intervals since 1985, concentrating on the colonial and indigenous architecture, urban details, landscapes, and intimate portraits of people in their home settings, street scenes, and the city’s surrounding countryside.
Crawford is the only known Western or Vietnamese photographer to approach Hanoi as a study over time. In the years before the tourist boom, he was often the only American in the North. Crawford’s early photographs reveal a city in extreme disrepair, but with enough colonial and pre-colonial detail remaining to give a sense of what the city had looked like in better times.
In 1986, the Communist leadership began to shift from Soviet-style central planning toward free-market economic reforms. As a result, Hanoi has been transformed over the last (roughly) three decades, becoming a textbook example of how traditional Asian and third-world cities have often been torn down or allowed to crumble-only to re-emerge in “modernized” form. What modernization looks like, and the choices people make on its behalf, is the essential theme of Hanoi Streets.
Size: 11 in x 11 in
Illustrations: 300 color
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June 28, 2018 to July 28, 2018