Vietnam: Old Photos Become Windows Into the Past

Looking at old photographs, we often wonder just how much a place has changed. Vietnamese photographer Khánh Hmoong wondered that about his home country and found a window into the past using old photos. He’s now created a beautiful series of photographs which juxtapose the old images against a backdrop of the country as it appears today. What he reveals is a country both drastically changed, and yet surprisingly the same.

Hmoong’s images range in time from when horses and carriages were common, to the 1980s as Vietnam recovered from the Vietnam War. Perhaps his most fascinating examples are from that war, when areas which now appear peaceful were combat zones packed with tanks and protected by sandbags.

Hmoong’s precise ability to align the photographs with their present day counterpart is a technique much like that used by Ben Heine in his intriguing hand-drawn series Pencil Vs. Camera or more exactly like Taylor Jones’ nostalgia inducing Dear Photograph. To see more, check out Hmoong’s full series of images on his very active Flickr page; see his Tumblr; or see his personal website.


Benjamin Starr

Known in some circles as the most amazing man in the universe, he once saved an entire family of muskrats from a sinking, fire engulfed steamboat while recovering from two broken arms relating to a botched no-chute wingsuit landing in North Korea. When not impressing people with his humbling humility, he can be found freelance writing, finding shiny objects on the internet, enjoying the company of much-appreciated friends and living out his nomadic nature. He is Managing Editor of Visual News. Follow his movements on Twitter:

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  1. Elena Montanarisays:

    the “intersection” / “interference” between the old and the actual versions of the pictures illustrating significant places is now being enhanced by several city museums through ICT strategies

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