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This is Part 1 of a  six-part photo essay by Beijing-based student and artist Liu Qilin, who recently finished his freshman year of undergraduate study at Beijing Normal University. Liu, who goes by the English name Jady, is founder of the Beijing Hutong Team, a loose collective of artists and creatives united in a desire to document Beijing’s inner-city alleys (胡同, hutong), which are currently undergoing a process of “renovation” that many feel is stripping them of their historical and cultural charm.

Liu Qilin says about this photo:

One afternoon, when I was strolling through the hutongs around Yonghegong Lama Temple, I found this tea room. Sometimes you really can’t imagine what you will encounter around the next corner of the hutong, like this shop; it’s entirely a new world.

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