The Beijing Silvermine project began in 2009, when Thomas Sauvin, a Frenchmen who's been a long resident of Beijing, discovered a film and negative recycling plant on the outskirt of Beijing. Every month Sauvin went to buy the negatives by kilos, he has become a curator of what he calls vernacular Chinese photography. He estimates that he has sifted through more than half a million images, taken by ordinary citizens, between 1985 and the early 2000s of their everyday life, work, leisure, travel, both in China and abroad etc. From the Beijing Sivermine archive, Sauvin created a few books.
The very first book from Beijing Silvermine is Until Death Do Us Part - a cigarette box sized photobook that uncovers a bizarre smoking tradition common at Chinese weddings: as part of the wedding celebration, one of bride’s duties is to light a cigarette for every smoking attendee. The cigarette box is from the original Double Happiness "红双喜" packaging. Double Happiness is a traditional sign to symbolize marriages which made this brand a wedding favorite.