Fan Ho has been referred to as the Henri Cartier-Bresson of the east. Born in Shanghai in 1931, he received his first Kodak Brownie from his father when he was 14. He won his first photography award in 1949, and created an amazing body of work before he was 30 years old, mostly in Hong Kong where he moved with his parents. He moved on to acting and film directing before retiring until retiring at 65.
The Living Theater is the second of three books showcasing Fan Ho’s work. His first book, Hong Kong Yesterday, might be my favorite, but The Living Theater is close behind. His third book, Hong Kong Memoir, features more conceptual and experimental work, while the first two are street and landscape driven.
Fan Ho’s work features beautiful light, geometry, and integration of people with their environment. I highly recommend checking it out. You can see many of his works on his estate web site.
Fan Ho’s books are hard to find. Modern Book in the US has been a representative of Fan Ho’s work in the past. They seem to be reprinting at least his first book soon. There is some controversy between Modern Book and his estate representatives, but I am not sure what that means for the future of his books and work. You can also check out the Blue Lotus Gallery for more information.