After a Thursday start, Shenzhen's International Cultural Industry Fair (or ICIF for the acronym inclined) wraps up today. The 13th ICIF was 100,000 sqaure meters filled by 117 exhibitors from 40 countries and regions, all attempting to cash in on the questionably cultural.
On show was everything from Egyptian rugs and North Korean paintings, to miniature Austrian bandsaws in a booth with an employee that would shout down any attempt at a photo.
This gentleman was peddling in the cultural product of handbags made in Inner Mongolia
A surprising amount of ivory was on show (both elephant and mammoth), with what the vendors said was a hand-carved version of the Great Helmsman
Naturally it was very crowded, with scalpers outside trying to buy back tickets for about RMB20
The men manning the North Korea painting booth were ethnically Korean, but of Chinese nationality
The glory of metal work is beautifully illustrated in this North Korean painting
Shenzhen artist Huang Zhou proves that the city isn't a cultural desert: we have soulless clowns
An above view of one of the multiple halls used.
Despite the 'cultural' moniker, the ICIF was more about selling in bulk than ancient (unmarketable) traditions. In a sense, every booth was a display of the same thing: the mercantile nature of modern China – a culture in of itself.