Hutong Photographer

With a camera around his neck, this wandering old gentleman is, however, no tourist at all, but a Beijing native. His photographic journey through the city’s famous hutongs started in the 1980s, when he hung around, trying to capture any interesting views. His neighbors used to think of he had a screw loose.


30 years later, you can find the same kind of wanderers with their cameras on almost every corner.


This 55-year-old man is Jia Yong, who’s been living in south Beijing with five generations of his family. Now he runs a luzhu – stewed pork offal – restaurant in the Dashilar shopping street which is south of Tian’anmen Square. This restaurant is renowned for the black-and-white photos upon its walls, and in those photos, Jia has preserved what the hutongs used looked like decades ago.


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