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Hangzhou is all right

By Philip Tinari

•Qiu Zhijie in Longjing Village, Hangzhou, 2007. Photo by Luluc Huang.

"What do you think of 'departing from post-colonialism?'" Gao Shiming asked me, the moment we sat down for coffee at eight o'clock one recent rainy morning in Hangzhou, former Song-dynasty capital and present-day capital of Zhejiang province.

"As an exhibition title?" I replied, a bit startled to be hopping straight into the topic without a word of small talk. "No," he countered, "as a discourse."

The exchange sounded punchier and more allegorical in Mandarin…

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