NYC Chinese Cultural Events and Art Exhibitions: August 19 – August 25, 2016


This week: the launch of Huayuan Art’s salon series, a tour of Cao Fei’s first US solo show with a writer and curator who really gets the artist and her themes, and five new exhibition listings that bring the total number of current shows by artists of Chinese descent in NYC that we’re aware of to 22.

Coming up:

August 26 – Opening reception for Hai-Hsin Huang’s A Museum Show

September 3 – 11 – The critically acclaimed Kaili Blues 《路边野餐》 screens at Museum of the Moving Image.

September 17 – Modern Sky Festival

We add talks, films, performances, exhibitions, featuring or relating to Chinese, Taiwanese, diasporic artists and topics to our event and ongoing exhibition calendars as we learn of them.

We post frequently on our Facebook page.  So check the page for links we share and get a heads up on events before we include them in these weekly posts.  Take a look also at our Instagram page.

If you’re interested in contributing to Beyond Chinatown, whether writing an article, contributing photos or artwork to be featured with our weekly events and exhibitions listing, letting us know about an event, send an email to


1) One Hundred Years of Modern Suzhou Embroidery – Huayuan Art launches a salon art series with a discussion about and exhibition featuring a modern update to the traditional fine and impossibly realistic craft of Suzhou embroidery.

Read about Huayuan Art and Suzhou embroidery in our earlier coverage of their booth at ArtExpo in April.

Wednesday, August 24, 7 – 9 PM
Huayuan Art, 424 Broadway 6th Fl.
$10 suggested donation


2) Cao Fei at MoMA PS1: Exhibition Walkthrough with Xin Wang – Xin Wang, NYC based curator and researcher, leads a walkthrough of the first museum solo show in the United States of Beijing-based artist Cao Fei.  The exhibition presents a summary of the artist’s work to date across a range of mediums, including video, photography, sculpture and installation, and takes place in First Floor Main Galleries of MoMA PS1.  Keep up with updates from the Facebook event page.

The New York Times has a good introduction to the artist and media art mavens Screen provides an insightful review.

Thursday, August 25, 4 – 5 PM
MoMA PS1, 22-25 Jackson Ave, Long Island City
Free, but RSVP required.


1) Line Walker 《使徒行者》- Movie version of the hit HK TV drama. Charmaine Sheh is laden with the task of finding the six mysterious undercover agents. Helping her will be Q-sir (Francis Ng), who is a smart and quick-witted cop. Infiltrating the triads once again, Charmaine will face the dangers of the underground world and will be thrown into the middle of two notorious gang members: Louis Koo — who plays an unconventional drug lord whose actions are always a mystery, and Nick Cheung — a careful, tactical, and coldblooded killer who does not let anything stop his goals. During the operation, Charmaine receives a shocking text stating that the sixth undercover is either Louis or Nick. Determined to finish her mission, Charmaine throws her life on the line and becomes tangled with the triads.

OpensAugust 19 at AMC Empire 25.



2) Sweet Sixteen 《夏有乔木 雅望天堂》– A Korean Chinese romance based on an internet novel

Opens August 19 at AMC Empire 25.


3) My Best Friend’s Wedding 《我最好朋友的婚礼》 – A Chinese remake of the smash Julia Roberts hit of the same name.  The remake centers on a pair of journalists — male and female — who have grown up together as best friends. The man falls in love with a wealthy Chinese girl who has been studying in the U.K, and asks his female friend to be his ‘best man’. The female friend realizes that she loves him, not just as a friend, and sets out for London a few days before the wedding determined to win him back.

At AMC Empire 25 


In addition to the listings below, one local artist is participating in group show:

Catherine Lan and Ginger Chan are part of a new media group exhibition, Always On Never Off at Macy Gallery, Suite 544 Macy Building, 525 120th Street, Teacher’s College, Columbia University.  The opening reception is 8/12 from 5 – 8 PM.

Ping Wang exhibits his photographs inspired by dreams and the surrealist movement which use strong lighting and symbolism to create an atmosphere of psychologically charged unease at SVA’s In Cylinder group exhibition 8/13 – 9/10.

Opening and Newly Added:

1) Li Qiang: Solo Show (Klein Sun Gallery, 8/4 – 9/3) – This solo exhibition presents selected works from the artist which were created in 2015 and 2016. In these recent works, Li Qiang focuses on images of political figures, activists, and books. Through breaking up image and text from different magazines, Li Qiang uncovers the figure of several political activists. In another work, Ocean (2015), the artist stacks layers of magazine fragments, creating an image of ocean waves, dissolving the original information and meaning from the magazine.

In the process of tearing, Li Qiang reveals to us that information, knowledge, and the truth can always be reconstructed and distorted, and therefore may have exacerbated the confusion inherent in today’s information age.

Head Portrait, 2015 Magazines 38 5/8 x 32 7/8 in. (98 x 83.5 cm)

Head Portrait, 2015
38 5/8 x 32 7/8 in. (98 x 83.5 cm)


2) Tang-Wei Hsu – Crystal Cave (Asymmetrik Gallery, 8/10 – 8/24) – Crystal Cave is a part of residency program at ASYMMETRIK Gallery in which Tang-Wei Hsu took part in. Through on-site creation, the artist intends to show us a crystal-like visual illusions drawn from his imagining of pressure, temperature, and time emanating from a crystal cave. By so doing, an interesting aura and visual power forms within and outside, bring about a sensible interaction with the viewers.

For this exhibition, Hsu also produces a series of paintings entitled Invisible Mountain.  The artist attempts to create scenes resembling natural environments inhabited by busy insect-like creatures with mechanical features and further draws a number of entomo-creatures with mechanical details shuttling in the scenes.  His unique style and deliberate visual disposition make the Invisible Mountain look like some unknown kingdom in the real world; moreover, the artist’s imagination apparently becomes more realistic because of the compact spatial composition. 

Invisible_Mountain 《大無極山》

Invisible_Mountain 《大無極山》


3) Sue Tsai – Misadventures of the Heart (208 Bowery, 8/11 – 8/28) – A gallery and pop-up shop by local artist and designer Sue Tsai.


4) Zhai Liang: Living Room (Fou Gallery, 8/18 – 10/9) – New works by Zhai Liang are drawn directly on the gallery’s walls turning them into large chalkboard murals.  The works reveal the artist’s thoughts and fantasies surrounding the interchangeability between public and private spaces.


5) Joanne Wang – Calligraphic Nature (Gallery 456, 8/16 – 8/22) – Born in Beijing, China, Joanne Wang developed an interest in Chinese poetry, art, and calligraphy at an early age.  Since coming to the United States, she has drawn artistic inspiration from the Western tradition.  In her work one sometimes sees the serenity and tranquility of Chinese traditional painting, and other times an adventurous foray into abstraction, as a mode of aesthetic freedom.  Individual works arise as the result of particular occasions and emotions, which explains the wide range of subjects and moods, from classical serenity to modernist dynamism.

6) Wenjie Han: Scenes  (Cloud Gallery, 8/25 – 9/1) – The first New York City solo show of New Jersey based artist Wenjie Han. Han started his photographs and paintings without a specific plan or target, seizing the moment by virtue of those scenes merely touching his personal memories of the past. Han’s works present an illusion when he “saves” the scenes in reality or in computer game, which reveals thousands of lonely individuals’ solitude.

Wenjie Han, Scenes No.3

Wenjie Han, Scenes No.3

Closing soon:

Peili: Greater New York (Klein Sun Gallery, 6/30 – 8/19)

Zhang Gong: The Watcher (Klein Sun Gallery, 6/30 – 8/19)

RongRong & inri (荣荣&映里) – Tamari Story 《妻有物语》 (Chambers Fine Art, 6/4 – 8/20)

The Chelsea International Fine Art Competition (Agora Gallery, 8/11 – 8/23)

Deng Tai: Shadow (MoMA PS1, 6/19 – 8/28)

Cao Fei (MoMA PS1, 4/3 – 8/31)


Current shows:

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

Peili: Greater New York (Klein Sun Gallery, 6/30 – 8/19)

Zhang Gong: The Watcher (Klein Sun Gallery, 6/30 – 8/19)

RongRong & inri (荣荣&映里) – Tamari Story 《妻有物语》 (Chambers Fine Art, 6/4 – 8/20)

Joanne Wang – Calligraphic Nature (Gallery 456, 8/16 – 8/22)

The Chelsea International Fine Art Competition (Agora Gallery, 8/11 – 8/23)

Tang-Wei Hsu – Crystal Cave (Asymmetrik Gallery, 8/10 – 8/24)

Deng Tai: Shadow (MoMA PS1, 6/19 – 8/28)

Sue Tsai – Misadventures of the Heart (208 Bowery, 8/11 – 8/28)

Cao Fei (MoMA PS1, 4/3 – 8/31)

Yiyang Cao – A Collection of Slow Openings (The CLUSTER Gallery, 8/11 – 9/1)

Li Qiang: Solo Show (Klein Sun Gallery, 8/4 – 9/3)

Global by Design: Chinese Ceramics from the R. Albuquerque Collection (Metropolitan Museum of Art, through 9/5/16)

Ka-Men Tse Photography (NYPL – Mulberry Street Library, 6/2 – 9/7)

Stage Design by Ming Cho Lee (Museum of Chinese in America, 4/28 – 9/11)

The Keeper (New Museum, 7/20 – 9/25)

Zhai Liang: Living Room (Fou Gallery, 8/18 – 10/9)

Wenjie Han: Scenes  (Cloud Gallery, 8/25 – 9/1)

Colors of the Universe: Chinese Hardstone Carvings (Metropolitan Museum of Art, through 10/9/16)

From the Imperial Theater: Chinese Opera Costumes of the 18th and 19th Centuries (Metropolitan Museum of Art, through 10/9/16)

Cinnabar: The Chinese Art of Carved Lacquer, 14th – 19th Century (Metropolitan Museum of Art, through 10/9/16)

Masterpieces of Chinese Painting from the Metropolitan Collection (Metropolitan Museum of Art, 10/31/15 – 10/11/16)

Han Bing: Urban Amber (FitzGerald Fine Arts, 8/1 – 11/1)

Folk My Life (New York Foundation for the Arts Gallery, 7/22 – 10/21)

Lead image: At the Ming Xiaoling Mausoleum in Nanjing