Luo Bonian (1911-2002) – also known as Luo Jun – was born in a family of country government official in Hangzhou. In 1932 he graduated from Hangzhou Business College at the age of twenty-one and started to work as an accountant at the Zhejiang Commercial Bank. His career as a banker did not prevent him from experimenting with photography as an after-work pleasure. In truth it is worth remembering that in the mind of early twentieth-century Chinese middle-class the medium of photography was regarded as a very fashionable yet expensive leisure. Luo’s pictures reveal inspiration drawn from both domestic and Western aesthetics. This enabled him to play around on the one hand with Chinese pictorial tradition and its peculiar attention notably to landscape, calligraphy, and painterly quality, on the other with the modernist avant-garde of Western photography that tended to emphasize on the surreal exploration of forms and reality. Luo’s long-time experience of working and living in two international metropolises such as Hong Kong and Shanghai provided him with access to first-hand photographic news in Europe and America.
See more of Luo Bonian’s work at Photography of China.
Photography Friday is a regular feature from Shanghaiist in association with Photography of China, Marine Cabos’s fantastic trilingual blog about photography and photographers in China.