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Shanghai, in a parallel universe

Updated: 2019-07-19 08:19:46

( China Daily )

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Mark Siegemund's photo: Center Piece, Huxinting Teahouse at Yuyuan Garden in autumn.[Photo provided to China Daily]

He still vividly remembers how amazed he was at the city when he first laid eyes on it, saying that the reality was nothing like what he expected.

"I was surprised that the city was so modern. My impression of China before I came was that it was this 'romanticized' land that was filled with rickshaws and traditional Chinese things. Many people in Germany still think that China is like that today," he laughs.

"In Germany, there's more uniformity in the style of the buildings located along the same street," he adds.

"Here in Shanghai, the landscape is just so dense, and the buildings differ so much from one another. Things are a little messy but it is also this mess that makes the scene so vibrant. There's a charm to this organized chaos."

Captivated by the vibrant nature of the city, he returned to Shanghai in 2012 after graduating, starting his career at an architecture firm that allowed him to travel around China to places like Dalian in Liaoning province, Guilin in Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region and Haikou in Hainan province. Back then, photography was just a means of helping him to document the unique architecture of Shanghai.

It wasn't until three years ago that he started an Instagram account and took his photography to another level by adding a touch of flair through editing software. Slowly but surely, his works won him a legion of fans on Instagram-he currently has about 45,000 followers.

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