Combing for Ice and Jade
175 x 245 mm
Hardcover, section sewn perfect binding
27pp with 8 booklets and one piece of leaf
First edition of 700
Published April 2019
Published by Jiazazhi
Combing for Ice and Jade is a love note from Kurt Tong to his nanny, who was one of the last remaining ‘self combed’ women left in China. An early form of Feminism, the comb up ceremony granted women great autonomy at a great cost.
Kurt Tong has worked closely with his nanny over a period of nearly 7 years. Having only 8 photographs of herself, the book is an exploration of her extraordinary life. Her story is slowly revealed through the book, combined with Kurt’s family archive, found photographs from her extended families, new photographs, Chinese ink works and women’s magazines from China that spanned 6 decades.
Combing for Ice and Jade / Kurt Tong
Born in Hong Kong in 1977, Kurt Tong left to UK when he was 13 years old. Currently he bases in Hong Kong. In his early career as a photographer, he was good at taking documentary and photojournalism. Gradually, he turns attention to his own family history. His work concentrates on individuals, like his grandfather, his parents and his nanny. Combing for Ice and Jade won Punctum Award in Lianzhou Foto in 2017 and Photo Folio Award in Les Rencontres d’Arles in 2018.