Gabrielle Jaffe is a freelance journalist who is currently based in China, covering travel, culture and current affairs for publications including The Atlantic, The Times, and Los Angeles Times.
Latest entries
China's Newest Market Opportunity: Pollution Control

China’s Newest Market Opportunity: Pollution Control

It’s a rare “blue sky” day in Beijing. The city is bathed in a beautiful late-afternoon light—the kind that makes people rush outside just to enjoy it. But rather than bask in the weather, a small group of expats and Chinese locals have instead chosen to
Beijing Independent Film Festival derailed by authorities

Beijing Independent Film Festival derailed by authorities

The Beijing Independent Film Festival has a long history of absurd run-ins with the Chinese authorities, but this year’s edition opened in such a Kafka-esque manner it could have been penned by an indie scriptwriter. It began in mid-August with festival director Wang Hongwei announcing
Inside Beijing's former brothels

Inside Beijing’s former brothels

“Welcome to my humble brothel,” jokes Simon Gjeroe, our 6ft-plus guide. Kowtowing to fit through the doorway, he ushers us into a two-storey building that was once one of Beijing’s bordellos. Today we are touring Bada Hutong, an area a half mile square that is
Bringing art to the middle class in China

Bringing art to the middle class in China

As the world’s top collectors, gallerists and dealers converged in Hong Kong a week ago for Art Basel, the city’s inaugural edition of one of the world’s premier art shows, a very different kind of art venture was launching in the mainland: an online platform for buying affordable
Restaurant review: Back Alley Bistro

Restaurant review: Back Alley Bistro

It’s no secret that one of the best burgers in town is served –‑ somewhat incongruously – at the nail salon/bar Frost Nails. But now Beijing’s diners have a more sophisticated place to get their teeth into these juicy buns, as Frost’s owner, Jeff Powell,
The Middle Kingdom Ride:  A motorbike odyssey around China

The Middle Kingdom Ride: A motorbike odyssey around China

Imagine travelling 11,600 miles. That’s more than twice the distance from Beijing to London as the crow flies – or the distance needed to circumnavigate China, as Canadian brothers Ryan and Colin Pyle found out on their epic journey motorcycling all the way round the
Reform now or there’ll be a revolution, Chinese leaders told

Reform now or there’ll be a revolution, Chinese leaders told

China faces the prospect of “violent revolution” if the Government fails to implement political reform, a group of prominent intellectuals is warning six weeks after the country’s change of leadership. The call, from 73 of China’s leading scholars, came as dramatic footage emerged yesterday of
China's indie filmmakers: The way of the dragon seal

China’s indie filmmakers: The way of the dragon seal

BEIJING — Yang Jin shot his first film, “The Black and White Milk Cow,” in his hometown in 2004 for $1,600. He asked villagers to be his actors, paying them only in cigarettes, and his main expense was $320 spent renting the titular cow. The
Interview: Ang Lee

Interview: Ang Lee

‘There are some unwritten rules in the film industry,’ says Ang Lee , the Oscar-winning director of Brokeback Mountain, discussing the difficulties of making his latest film. ‘Don’t work with kids, don’t work with animals, and don’t work with water. This film includes all three
Interview: Expendables 2 actress Yu Nan

Interview: Expendables 2 actress Yu Nan

It’s no surprise that the team behind The Expendables 2 should want to bring a Chinese actress onboard. The first instalment of The Expendables – the testosterone-fuelled fight-fest that saw Sylvester Stallone and his merry band of action men, including Jason Statham, Bruce Willis and Jet Li, trotting round
Doyenne of China’s fashion revolution

Doyenne of China’s fashion revolution

Nothing quite demonstrates the potential of China’s consumers as the country’s proliferation of luxury malls. In downtown Beijing, a one mile stretch of Jianguomen Inner Street is lined with half a dozen of them. Each the size of London’s Shepherd’s Bush Westfield, together they present
James Cameron launches joint venture for 3D films in China

James Cameron launches joint venture for 3D films in China

Filmmaker James Cameron and 3-D photography specialist Vince Pace have announced that their Cameron Pace Group, which specializes in providing 3-D technology, services and consulting to other producers, will launch a new joint venture in China. The deal was announced Wednesday with the state-owned Tianjin North Film Group and Tianjin High-Tech Holding Group. CPG China will be