CROWD CONTROL: THE POLARIZED SHOPPING CULTURE IN BUSAN, SOUTH KOREA

IF YOU WANT TO BUY AN APPLE in Busan, you have basically two options. You can go to a department store—Lotte Mart, Hyundai, Shinsegae—which are 12-floor goliaths offering everything from Gucci products to a park on the roof. Your other option is a street vendor, a wizened old Korean who will offer often-bruised produce surrounded by flies.

What’s amazing is that, in Busan, the lower classes have banded together to create their own Centum Cities—booming, popular marketplaces that are both mirror images and polar opposites of the luxury department stores.

My latest piece for The Mass Ornament, and my first photo essay. It took me a few weeks to compile all the pictures—there’s about six locations in Busan that I jaunted through to see what they were like. Almost every shot was taken as incognito as possible, just walking and holding the camera by my side (which is why so many shots are profile-oriented instead of landscape/horizontal).

I’ll also put up a link to my Flickr here, for those interested in the shots that didn’t make the cut/anything else I’ve shot over the years.

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