This post originally appeared on Volume

Filmmaker Kit Chung has created a series of fascinating and hypnotic GIFs that are intimate portraits of Beijing metro passengers.

Beijing metro commuter

Subway systems can be seen as the heart of a city: a visitor must ride the tube in London or the subway in New York to truly experience their essence. Chung’s GIFs give similar insight into the heart of Beijing with intimate “moving portraits” of passengers on Line 2, the city’s oldest metro line.

Beijing metro commuter

A city, especially a massive and sprawling Chinese city such as Beijing, can easily be conceptualized as an undifferentiated mass, a swarming and anonymous populous that moves pointlessly over its landscape. With Chung’s GIFs, we get access to individuals’ stories and glimpses into the lives that make up Beijing’s diverse social landscape. You can see more GIFs on his Tumblr.

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