NYC Chinese Cultural Events and Art Exhibitions: November 3 – November 9, 2017

Pool Wear and Accessories

This week: David Henry Hwang visits MOCA and, with Julie Taymor, Asia Society; a symposium about photography and media art in the 1990s China; a concert of new classical competitions; Chinese British Guo Xiaolu; a Chinese movie set during the 1871 Chinese Massacre; Cheryl Wing-Zi Wong’s public art project that encourages discussion about the Chinatown/LES neighborhood; a 4K restoration of a Hou Hsiao-Hsien film; and more…

Coming up:

11/11 – Screenings and conversations with anthropologists and filmmakers whose work and practice are integral to thinking about ethnographic film in and of China.

11/11 – 11/19 – An adaptation of David Auburn’s Pulitzer and Tony-winning Proof by Chinatown drama company, The Four Seas Players

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.  For art, images, and other instances of Chineseness we see, follow our Instagram.

We’re looking for contributors!  If you’re interested in writing an article, contributing photos or artwork to be featured with our weekly events and exhibitions listing, letting us know about an event, send a pitch at


1) Symposium: Photography and Media Art in China since the 1990s – In collaboration with The Institute of Fine Arts, New York University, The Walther Collection will present an international symposium on photography and media art in China since the 1990s.

The symposium brings together leading international scholars, curators, writers, and artists to address a wide range of topics pertinent to the production and reception of photography, video, and new media art practices in China from the 1990s to present.

Juxtaposing scholarly research and critical reflections on broader contexts of cultural production and social history, the symposium incorporates dialogues on individual practices, featuring conversations on the video installations of Yang Fudong and Lu Yang. Incorporating a wide range of perspectives, the symposium will provide an opportunity for exchange, debate, and new insight into the critical issues that continue to shape this vibrant field.

Friday, November 3, 1 – 6:30 PM
The Institute of Fine Arts, New York University, 1 East 78th Street


2) We the Workers 《凶年之畔》 – For over thirty years, China has been swept up in rapid capitalist development. The “China miracle” has been built on the backs of hundreds of millions of migrant laborers. This film features workers from different provinces spanning two generations who have resisted this force through activist struggle and action.

Dir. Huang Wenhai (黄文海)
China, 2017, 173 min.
Mandarin with English subtitles

Followed by Q&A with Huang Wenhai and Zeng Jinyan, moderated by Suzanne Nossel, Executive Director, PEN America.

Part of the film festival Turn It On: China on Film, 2000–2017 co-curated by Ai Weiwei and Wang Fen

Friday, November 3, 6:30 PM
Guggenheim Museum


3) M. Butterfly Back on Broadway: A Conversation With David Henry Hwang and Julie Taymor  – David Henry Hwang’s Tony Award-winning play M. Butterfly is currently on Broadway in a dazzling new production, starring Academy Award nominee Clive Owen and directed by the visionary Julie Taymor (The Lion King). Based on a real-life scandal, M. Butterfly delves into a world of love, espionage, and deception. David Henry Hwang and Julie Taymor come together to discuss their artistic collaboration and the new vision they have developed in recognition of the wider issues that make the production contemporary, nearly 30 years after its original Broadway debut in 1988.

Friday, November 3, 6:30 PM, live webcast at
Asia Society


4) Constellation: Cycle 2 Discussion + Opening: TODAY – The second phase of Cheryl Wing-Zi Wong’s  public art project in the form of a pavilion, activated by a series of construction performances and urban discussions kicks off.  The installation has been transformed, and guests are invited to participate in a discussion about the ongoing urban transformations in the Lower East Side / Chinatown neighborhoods, spanning current-day urban issues and plans for the area, including housing, public space, local cultural landmarks, and Seward Park’s recently awarded grant for renovations as part of the Parks Without Borders program.

Saturday, November 4, 4:30 – 6 PM
Seward Park, Plaza in front of the library, Chinatown/LES


5) Music from China: Premiere Works XXV – The 25th concert of Music From China’s Premiere Works series features new and commissioned works by award-winning composers Mathew Rosenblum, Zhou Long, Wang Guowei, and winners of the 2017 Music From China International Composition Prize. Works are composed for Chinese instruments including pipa, erhu, zheng, dizi, with cello and percussion.

Saturday, November 4, 8 PM
Leonard Nimoy Thalia at Peter Norton Symphony Space, 2537 Broadway


6) The Eternal Oral Storytelling—Suzhou Pingtan – Pingtan, a storytelling art form accompanied by the instrument, originated in Suzhou 400 years ago and flourished in Shanghai at the turn of the 19th century and the 20th century. As an oral performance art form, Pingtan is reputed to be the sweetest tone in China. With the combination of storytelling and singing, Pingtan features unique artistic characteristics of reasoning, taste, unexpectedness, interest and minuteness.

In this lecture, Ms. Zhou Hong, a renowned Pingtan performer from China, will illustrate the essence of Suzhou Pingtan with demonstration.

Sunday, November 5, 2 PM
China Institute


7) Junzi x Fou: Flavors of a New Landscape – Fou Gallery and Junzi are delighted to invite you to celebrate the season and terroir with Michael Eade artwork and Lucas Sin’s tasting menus. Parallel with Fou Gallery’s current exhibition Michael Eade: Realms of the Soil, Lucas will serve a short tasting menu over the course of 3 events.

Eade purposefully creates landscapes based on real world places that are often associated with mythologies. Drawing inspiration from Eastern and Western art, botanical illustrations, collected objects and cell phone photos of real plants taken by Eade and his friends, Eade transforms his landscapes into his version of a “Utopia”. At Junzi Kitchen, terroir, season, and culture are similarly explored through the lens of modern Chinese cuisine. For this collaboration, in tandem with Michael Eade’s landscapes, Sin will host a short tasting menu that responds to Michael’s art and objects, exploring themes of the early fall.

At the two events at Junzi Kitchen, you are invited to a sit-down dinner with the artist and the chef to learn about the inspiration and creative process. For the last event at Fou Gallery, you can walk through the exhibition with the artist, appreciate the artworks while trying the small plates and cocktails created by the chef. Together with Sin and Eade, enjoy a flavorful and inspiring experience that brings art into life.

Sunday, November 5, 3 PM
Fou Gallery, 410 Jefferson Avenue, #1, Brookly


8) An Evening with David Henry Hwang – When David Henry Hwang wrote and premiered his groundbreaking play, M. Butterfly 30 years ago at the age of 30, it was transformative for Asian American arts and Asian Americans in the arts. Please join David Henry Hwang for a conversation at MOCA on the revival of the Tony-winning M. Butterfly and a deeper dive into the themes of gender, culture, and power explored in the play.

Tuesday, November 7, 6:30 PM
Museum of Chinese in America


9) ChinaFile Presents: Nine Continents — A Conversation with Memoirist Xiaolu Guo – As a young child, Xiaolu Guo visited a Taoist monk who pronounced her a “peasant warrior.” “She will cross the sea and travel to the Nine Continents,” the monk predicted.

But Guo doesn’t need a prophecy to tell her to pursue a life beyond her grandparents’ poor fishing village on the East China Sea. Through sheer determination and a bit of luck, she won a spot at China’s most prestigious film school, the Beijing Film Academy. In the nation’s capital, during the 1990s, she witnessed a bustling art world, wrote scripts for Chinese audiences crazy about soap operas, and fell in love with a foreigner. In her late 20s, Guo finally “crossed the sea” after accepting an art fellowship just outside of London — the city where she would ultimately build a life.

After many years away from China, Guo has become “a nomad in both body and mind,” not quite Chinese anymore and yet never totally at ease in London. Her latest book, Nine Continents: A Memoir In and Out of China, explores how Chinese families coped with the Cultural Revolution, China’s rapid economic growth, and a globalized world.

Wednesday, November 8, 6:30 PM
Asia Society


10) Eileen Chang’s Traces of Love: A Ben Wang Lecture Series (Part 2) – Eileen Chang (张爱玲, 1920-1995) is the most celebrated and imitated writer of 20th century China. An unusually keen and cool observer of the hauntedness of the human heart, her rich dramas capture the dark corners in the minds of her characters, most of whom are misfits of pathos in a quickly changing time and world.

In this three-session lecture series, China Institute Senior Lecturer Ben Wang delves into Chang’s life and work by focusing on Traces of Love (留情), one of her finest novellas. Its central theme is the makeshifty and falsified nature of love and relationships among its cast of characters. With meticulous descriptions of urban environments, climates, colors and sounds as the backdrop, Eileen Chang transforms her characters and their unsavory manners into a poignant and memorable literary masterwork not to be missed by those who are interested in modern Chinese literature.

Participants are asked to attend all three sessions. The registration fee includes a copy of the text for each participant. The lecture will be conducted in English. No previous knowledge of the Chinese language is required.

Thursday, November 9, 6:30 PM
China Institute


1) Daughter of the Nile 《尼罗河女儿》– Hou Hsiao-hsien returns to the terrain of contemporary youth experience with pop star Yang Lin as a teenager who escapes her fraught family situation into the fantasy world of a Japanese comic book in which a female time traveler in ancient Egypt falls in love with a pharaoh—echoing her own infatuation with her brother’s gigolo associate. An artfully subdued and unostentatiously refined portrait of nocturnal teenage anomie by one of cinema’s giants. A Cohen Film Collection release.

Dir. Hou Hsiao-Hsien
1987, Taiwan, 92 min.

Official Selection: Venice Film Festival, New York Film Festival

U.S. theatrical premiere engagement of 30th anniversary 4K restoration

The Village Voice says of the film, “It’s hard to imagine a more necessary screening experience this fall.”

Through November 9
Quad Cinema, 34 W. 13th Street


2) The Jade Pendant 《唐人街 》– Shot in Utah, The Jade Pendant is directed by Hong Kong veteran Leong Po-Chih (The DetonatorOut of Reach) and follows the journey of a young girl who, fleeing an arranged marriage in China, finds herself on American shores. Her tragic love story is set against the 1871 burning of Chinatown in Los Angeles and the largest mass lynching in American history. (Variety)

The film’s release is just after the October 24 anniversary of the Chinese Massacre of 1871.


3) M. Butterfly  – The first Broadway revival of David Henry Hwang’s Tony Award-winning play stars Academy Award nominee and Golden Globe Award winner Clive Owen as Rene Gallimard, Jin Ha as Song Liling and is directed by Tony Award winner Julie Taymor. M. Butterfly, charts the scandalous romance between a married French diplomat and a mysterious Chinese opera singer – a remarkable love story of international espionage and personal betrayal. Their 20-year relationship pushed and blurred the boundaries between male and female, east and west – while redefining the nature of love and the devastating cost of deceit.

talks about how the play has always been more than the salacious story on which it is based and how it remains provocative through 30 years of shifting social views and geopolitics

Through February 25, 2018
Cort Theatre, 138 W. 48th Street


4) The Foreigner – The film tells the story of humble London businessman Quan (Chan), whose long-buried past erupts in a revenge-fueled vendetta when the only person left for him to love — his teenage daughter — is taken from him in a senseless act of politically-motivated terrorism.

In his relentless search for the identity of the terrorists, Quan is forced into a cat- and-mouse conflict with a British government official (Brosnan), whose own past may hold clues to the identities of the elusive killers.

At various local theaters


Group Shows and Local Artists:

Breaking the Cocoon opens at Grady Alexis Gallery on November 5, showcasing works by Chenlin Cai, Yinjie Deng, Dongze Huo, Sarah Shinhyo Kim, Juna Law, Michael Sheng, Shanlin Ye, and Longfei Zhang.

Wang Xu is one of the artists at The 2017 Socrates AnnualThe Socrates Annual – formerly known as The Emerging Artist Fellowship Exhibition – is an annual exhibition of new public art that addresses the most urgent issues of today.

Fina Yeung will exhibit her mixed-media cardboard installations at ARTISTS CO-OP at the Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning which runs rom September 21 – November 11.

Chinese Indonesian artist FX Harsono is one of the artists in Asia Society’s After Darkness: Southeast Asian Art in the Wake of History which runs from September 8, 2017 – January 21, 2018.  A frequent theme in his work is about being part of the ethnic Chinese minority in the country.  From the exhibition page:

Lulu Meng will participate in Eating Bitterness,  a group show what meditates on the role of enduring adversity in the psyche of immigrant families, comprising nine artists’ work across sculpture, photography, painting, and performance.

Fou Gallery shows the fecund botany-themed works of Michael Eade which invoke a certain Chinese aesthetic in Realms of the Soil.

Opening and Newly Listed:

1) chin(A)frica: an interface (NYU, Institute of Fine Arts, 10/27/17 – 2/18/18) – The fall Duke House Exhibition, chin(A)frica: an interface, investigates new parameters in which identity and geopolitics are formulated through recent expansive exchanges between China and African countries over the past decade. The exhibition features works by four artists, two Chinese and two African nationals, who have reflected upon recent cross-continental relations and immigration. Held in the James B. Duke House, where the Institute of Fine Arts is located, the exhibition plays off the building’s historical significance, decorative and architectural style, and the Institute’s engagement with contemporary art.

chin(A)frica: an interface juxtaposes contemporary art practices from China and Africa in order to explore contested issues like identity and race by incorporating a geopolitical context not directly mediated by the West, nor dictated by its colonial legacy. The exhibition will be accompanied by a round table discussion and a screening program that seeks to challenge conventional debates on identity politics and self-representation from and beyond these bilateral positions. Organized by Duke House Exhibition 2017 – 2018 curators Xin Wang and Megan Ashley DiNoia.

Press opening and community round table:
November 14, 2017, 6:30 PM
Screening: December 15, 2017, 6:30 PM

Installation view, He Xiangyu, Wuqiao, 2017-ongoing. Photo courtesy Xin Wang.


2) Only One You: Solo Exhibition by Teng Teng (Flux Factory, 11/09 – 11/12) – Teng Teng is a New York-based painting artist from China.  In 2016 when she arrived in New York, she launched the Microcosm Painting Program workshop which was inspired by ancient Chinese hand scrolls, a portable form of art originated from Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). In the Microcosm Painting Program, miniature frames (1.1 × 1 in.) made of alloy, silver or 18k gold were used to contain paintings.  Later, they became housing for different accessories such as rings, necklaces, earrings, and brooches.

This combination of art and accessories soon became popular among fashionable young people not only for its uniqueness and delicacy but also for the feelings and expressions behind them.

This Micro Painting Art Exhibition presents all the Micro Paintings created by Teng Teng and 70 participants over 15 workshops. This exhibition is designed to show the link between art and people’s expression as well as the unlimited possibilities of art embodied within.


Closing soon:

Musquiqui Chihying: Resistance is Futile (Gallery 456, 10/6 – 11/3)

Fan Yu (ACAW x Sundaram Tagore Gallery, 10/12 – 11/4)

Guo Hongwei: The Pre-existent Painting (Chambers Fine Art, 10/1 – 11/12)

Only One You: Solo Exhibition by Teng Teng (Flux Factory, 11/09 – 11/12)

Dreams of the Kings: A Jade Suit for Eternity, Treasures of the Han Dynasty from Xuzhou (China Institute, 5/25 – 11/12)

Current shows:

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

Musquiqui Chihying: Resistance is Futile (Gallery 456, 10/6 – 11/3)

Fan Yu (ACAW x Sundaram Tagore Gallery, 10/12 – 11/4)

Guo Hongwei: The Pre-existent Painting (Chambers Fine Art, 10/1 – 11/12)

Only One You: Solo Exhibition by Teng Teng (Flux Factory, 11/09 – 11/12)

Dreams of the Kings: A Jade Suit for Eternity, Treasures of the Han Dynasty from Xuzhou (China Institute, 5/25 – 11/12)

Wei Xiaoguang: Durable Pixels (Sleep Center, 10/27 – 11/17, 2017)

East of Que Village: The Ends of Nature (The Walther Collection, 10/6 – 11/25)

Closer to the Beautiful World (Klein Sun Gallery, 10/12 – 11/25)

ACAW THINKING PROJECTS Pop-Up: Yang Xin (Beijing) (Klein Sun Gallery, 10/12 – 11/25)

Li Jun: Zi Jie at East Lake (ACAW x Mana Contemporary, 10/15 – 12/15)

Song Dong: Eating the City (ACAW x Mana Contemporary, 10/15 – 12/15)

Uncharted Waters (Boers-Li Gallery, 10/6 – 12/23)

Art and China after 1989: Theater of the World (Guggenheim Museum, 10/6/17 – 1/8/18)

Ai Weiwei: Good Fences Make Good Neighbors (multiple sites NYC, 10/12/17 – 2/1/18)

Patty Chang: The Wandering Lake, 2009 – 2017 (Queens Museum, 9/17/17 – 2/18/18)

FOLD: Golden Venture Paper Sculptures (Museum of Chinese in America, 10/5 /17 – 3/25/18)

In Focus: An Assembly of Gods (Asia Society Museum, 9/26/17 – 3/25/18)

Cheryl Wing-Zi Wong: Constellation (Seward Park, June 2017 – June 2018)

Streams and Mountains without End: Landscape Traditions of China (The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 8/26/17 – 1/9/19)

Lead image: Pool wear and accessories seen on the roadside in Hubei Province