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[Photos] Ha Giang: Evocative Portraits From Hoang Su Phi

Nestled amid the textured, corduroy rice terraces of Ha Giang Province lies Hoang Su Phi, a rural district that’s home to an array of ethnic minority communities.

Located about 300 kilometers north of Hanoi, the area is famous for its rice paddies, with the road to Xin Man now declared an area of National Heritage. In these portraits, however, French photographer Joseph Gobin delves into the vibrancy of village life.

In communities that seem lost in time, the focus remains on rice production, animal husbandry and caring for family members. Gobin’s portraits depict the daily realities of the Red Dao, Nung and Flower H’mong ethnic groups.

The shots are all taken on a medium format film camera. The images are posed, and lit by a remote flash. Modern photography remains heavily influenced by classical art, and in this series, you can see the kind of rich shadows and light that might feature in a Caravaggio.

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