Juxtaposing Vietnam’s Incredible Past and Present

While time travel has not yet become a viable option, we are given the opportunity to take a journey into the past through images. Even moreso, we're able to view two points in time at once! Like Shawn Clover‘s spectacularly blended images of San Francisco's past and present, Vietnamese photographer Khnh Hmoong combines visuals from two eras within one frame. However, the photographer focuses his series, titled Vietnam – Looking Into the Past, on his native land of Vietnam, using an approach similar to that of Taylor Jones' Dear Photograph.

By holding a superimposed photograph from the past over his chosen landscape, Hmoong merges two periods of time, juxtaposing their similarities and differences. Each photograph is meticulously aligned within its original destination, exposing the changes that have occurred in the area. The effects of time are visible through the environment's shift in architecture, the people's fashion choices, and the transformation in transportation–whether it be a modernization from horses to vehicles or simply from dated automotive models to modern design.

Regardless of location, comparing the past and present through images is always a fascinating look at history and change. Hmoong's series reveals so much about the history of Vietnam without words and actually makes the viewer want to learn more.

Khnh Hmoong on Instagram
Khnh Hmoong on Flickr


Pinar Noorata is the Managing Editor at My Modern Met. She is a writer, editor, and content creator based in Brooklyn, NY. She earned her BA in Film and Media Studies from CUNY Hunter College and is an alumni of the Center for Arts Education’s Career Development Program in NYC. She has worked at major TV, film, and publishing companies as well as other independent media businesses. When she isn’t writing, editing, or creating videos herself, Pinar enjoys watching movies, reading, crafting, drawing, and volunteering at her local animal shelter.
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