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Photography by Serge Vargassoff
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Photography by Photo by Xiaoyang Yu
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These two photographs are the fifth ‘then and now’ images that we are sharing on Photo of the Day that have been researched by Nina Wang, an intern from the University of Sydney who has been working with our Registration team cataloguing the lantern slides of Serge Vargassoff taken in China from 1910s to 1940s. Serge Vargassoff (1906-1965) is a Russian-born photographer who established himself as a professional photographer, at the age of 20 in Beijing and became a long-term resident of the city. A set of 89 lantern slides in a Chinese style wooden box was donated to the Museum by Vera Vargassoff, a niece of Serge Vargassoff in 2010.
Nina has written the following:
This slide shows the Su Yun Yan Chengguan (Lodge Clouds Eave Pass or Suyunyan Watchtower) in the northwest of the Summer Palace. This pass (or watchtower) was built during the Qianlong reign (Qing dynasty). The pavilion on top of the city wall was to consecrate Guan Gong (Kuan Kung God). In the Qianlong reign there used to be closures around three sides of the Kunming Lake and the Su Yun Yan Pass was the west Pass of the Summer Palace. The old pine tree outside the Pass was also planted during the Qianlong reign.