The Temporary Ruins of Harbin’s Melting Ice Sculptures

Remember seeing photos of the Harbin International Ice and Snow Sculpture Festival in January—those huge ice sculptures set up in a park, part of an annual festival held in Harbin, northeastern China? Well, when the festival is over and springtime rolls around, those giant ice castles are left to melt and crumble in place, eventually becoming slushy piles cluttered with steel support rods, cables, and electrical wires that once powered colorful night lighting. Earlier this month, the photographer Wang Zhaobo visited Harbin to gather some fascinating aerial images of this ephemeral architecture returning to its liquid state.

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