by Cindy Hwang
Publisher's Description
In stark black and white images, artist CYJO documents fifty Chinese migrants, photographing only the subjects’ hands to reveal, paradoxically, the collective identity and anonymity of these marginalized workers. Through personal histories recorded by the artist, we learn about the difficult circumstances that propelled these migrants from their villages in search of work, and ultimately, survival.

Since China’s economic boom three decades ago, rapid urbanization has spurred internal migration from the countryside to cities, creating an impoverished labor force that faces unfair working conditions, limited access to education, and poor health care. Through faceless portraits, CYJO conveys the challenges experienced by the laborers; it is the unique texture of each subject’s hands that provides identification, and acts as physical evidence of harsh working and living conditions.

Substructure was created in collaboration with Compassion for Migrant Children, a nonprofit organization that helps China’s urban migrant children through social and education programs.
ISBN: 1884167810
Publisher: Umbrage Editions
Hardcover : 120 pages
Language: English
Dimensions: 8.5 x 12 x 0.2 inches
Buy on Amazon