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The human realm and the way of nature


YU YUNTIAN, Mist Against Bright Sky, photograph, courtesy Asian Art Coordinating Council, Denver.

Photography was introduced into China from the West in the nineteenth century, and it was the artform that best documented the clash of Chinese and western civilisations. Pressed into use as combat photography in the Crimean and American Civil wars, photography documented the worldwide expansion of European, American and eventually Japanese power around the globe. Chronicling the heathen was one of the earliest roles photography filled, yet collodion photography simultaneously documented…

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