Events and Exhibitions: August 1 – 7, 2014

Monkey Door

The Asian American International Film Festival (here’s our post) concludes this weekend with a number of films, but Film Forum picks up the slack for your Chinese documentary fix.  Also this week: Two readings, a musical collaboration, and a talk about a landmark 1996 video art exhibition in China.

We also remind you that Letters from the South (南方来信 / 南方來信), a collection of six shorts from acclaimed directors about Chinese diaspora in Southeast Asia. plays Thursday, July 31.

The one-time and short term event calendar and the ongoing exhibition calendar are up-to-date, and new events and exhibitions are added as they come up.  Upcoming events also can be found on listing on the right side of this page.  Let us know if there’s anything we should add to the calendar!

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Upcoming Events


1) Ghost Month Night Market – Ed Lin introduces his new book Ghost Month, a “darkly comic thriller” set in Taiwan at the start of ghost month (鬼月).   Ticket includes Taiwanese night market snacks from ten vendors and a free copy of the book.  Organized by the Asian American Writers Workshop, and co-sponsored by the Asian/Pacific/American Institute at NYU, Taiwanese American Professionals NY, and Asian in New York.

Friday, August 1, 6 – 8 PM
Taipei Cultural Center 1 East 42nd Street, 7th Floor
$30/general admission


2) 100 Days (真爱100天 / 真愛100天) – The AAIFF presents this Taiwanese comedy about Bo Dan, a callous executive who returns to the Matsu Islands for the burial of his mother.  Following tradition, he has to get married within 100 days so her spirit may be at peace.  Stranded by a typhoon in his estranged hometown, he rethinks his life and rekindles his passion for his childhood sweetheart.

Friday, August 1, 7:30 – 9:30 PM
City Cinema Village East, 189 2nd Ave (at 12th St)
$13/General admission; $11/seniors, students and disabled


3) Hui-ching Tseng Workshop Videos and Showcase  A presentation of stop-animation works made in the recent workshops and retrospective of Hui-ching Tseng’s own work.

Saturday, August 2, 1 – 3 PM
City Cinema Village East, 189 2nd Ave (at 12th St)
$13/General admission; $11/seniors, students and disabled


4) Memories of the Strike – Featuring three short films, this series looks at the plight of laborers in Taiwan, China, and California. Here’s info about the two Chinese-related films:

Grand Canal (大运河 / 大运河) – “A Greek Tragedy told in a Chinese pop song”…Born and living on the longest canal in China, and navigating the strange tides of the 90s when labor disputes emerge in the privatized businesses, a boat captain has to collect debts from his fellow boaters but gets himself in trouble.

A Breath from the Bottom (状况排除 / 狀況排除)- A dramatic and realistic story that centers on the father-son confrontation against a political backdrop that you don’t usually see in Taiwanese dramas. The father is among the peasant protesters to storm the capitol; the son is an ambitious cop to keep control. Dynamically shot in a black-and-white, journalistic style, the film smartly ties together a series of social movements in Taiwan over the past decade. Directed by the upcoming filmmaker and scriptwriter Chan Ching-lin, the film won the Best Director Award at the 2013 Taipei Film Festival and caused a disturbance at a screening in Miaoli County, Taiwan.


5) Fred Ho’s Last Year – Sneak Preview and Discussion – Fred Ho, the award-winning avant-garde jazz composer, Asian American author and political activist, who passed away on April 12, 2014 was active as ever in his last year.  He battled cancer, led protests, wrote a book about raw food, lectured, composed and wrote Deadly She-Wolf Assassin! an elaborate, manga-inspired samurai opera. Filmed over the course of 2013, the film provides a glimpse into Ho’s extraordinary life as a musician, a mentor, a pioneer and a dear friend for those who continue to be inspired by his courage and persistence.

Followed by a musical tribute by Fred Ho’s student Ben Barson.

Saturday, August 2, 5:30 – 7:30 PM
City Cinema Village East, 189 2nd Ave (at 12th St)
$13/General admission; $11/seniors, students and disabled


6) Shyushan – What will Tyshawn Sorey (drums) and Jen Shyu (vocals)come up with when they perform together?

Interstellar Duo #2 – Ras Moshe / Tyshawn Sorey:

Jen Shyu “Taiwanese Women’s Song” on WNYC’s Spinning On Air:

Sunday, August 3, 8 – 9 PM
The Stone, Corner of Avenue C and 2nd St.
$15/set; $10/students


7) Singapore Noir – “The placid city-state, Singapore, is exposed in all of its noir glory through scintillating stories told by some of the city’s best authors. Cheryl Lu-Lien Tan’s anthology, Singapore Noir, spins a breathless tale of crime, black magic, and enigma. This is a Singapore rarely explored in Western literature – until now. Join literary lions, Cheryl Lu-Lien Tan, Colin Goh, and Damon Chua in a reading and discussion as they unfold the opaque, intense and nebulous underbelly of the Lion City.” -MOCA event description

Thursday, August 7, 7 – 9 PM
Museum Of Chinese In America, 215 Centre Street
$15/adult; $10/seniors, members, and students


8) Image and Phenomena: Video Art and Exhibition-Making in 1990s China – Katherine Grube, the recipient of the inaugural Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation China Grant talks about the landmark Image and Phenomena, an exhibition of video art organized by Wu Meichun and Qiu Zhijie in 1996 at China Academy of Art in Hangzhou long considered the first serious engagement with video art in China. The exhibition consolidated a decade of experimentation with video in art through works from fifteen artists. (paraphrased from Asia Art Archive in America description)

Thursday, August 7, 7 – 8 PM
Asia Art Archive in America, 43 Remsen Street (Ground floor entrance) Brooklyn
Free, but RSVP required


Ongoing Films and Shows

1) Web Junkie (Film Forum, 8/6 – 8/19) –  A distressing documentary that looks at internet addiction in China through a visit to the Daxing Boot Camp, a clinic for people (mostly teenage boys) who have been sent there for therapy.  The Daily Beast has a review.

2) Mulan: The Percussion Musical (The Ellen Stuart Theatre, 6/25 – 9/13) – The Red Poppy Ladies’ Percussion group presents a reworked version of their earlier production of the story of legendary Chinese heroine, Mulan.  The 2012 production was praised for its music and theatrics but faulted for its production values.  This new version at a different theater seems to address the past weakensses



We put together available reviews of the current exhibitions in our Exhibition Review Roundup.  The exhibitions included in a roundup are marked with an asterisk.

Closing soon:

*Ai Weiwei: According to What? (Brooklyn Museum, 8/10)

*Tales of Two Cities: Beijing and New York (Bruce Museum, 8/14)

*Flotsam Jetsam (MoMA, 8/15)

Opening and newly added:

Let us know if there’s something people need to see.

Visit the exhibition calendar ( for details for the following shows below.  As always, check the museum or gallery’s website for hours of operation.

*Ai Weiwei: According to What? (Brooklyn Museum, 8/10)

*Tales of Two Cities: Beijing and New York (Bruce Museum, 8/14)

*Flotsam Jetsam (MoMA, 8/15)

New Acquaintances: Works by Chen Baoyang, Fu Xiaotong, GAMA and Wang Fengge (Chambers Fine Art, 8/16)

One Kind of Behavior (Bronx Museum of Art, 8/17)

*Zhang Dali: Square (Klein Sun Gallery, 8/30)

Oil and Water: Reinterpreting Ink (MoCA, 9/14)

Zhang Huan: Evoking Tradition (Storm King Art Center, 11/9)

*Phoenix: Xu Bing at the Cathedral (Cathedral of St. John the Divine, 2015)

Image: Entrance to the David H. Koch Theater during Monkey: Journey to the West’s 2013 run at the Lincoln Center FestivalPhoto by Andrew Shiue