NYC Chinese Cultural Events and Art Exhibitions: November 2 – November 8, 2018

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This week: Experimental puppetry based on a Chinese poem; Taiwanese singer Crowd Lu; Wu Man and the Taipei Chinese Opera; sci-fi author Liu Cixin; a play about the Chinese female in the United States begin previews; talks about the foods of Yunnan and immigrant identity; and more…

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Coming Up

11/9 – Sponge Gourd Collective discusses their process in investigating urban transformation in contemporary China through their zine publication People’s Square 人民广场

11/9 and 11/10 – Chinese films, including SXSW award-winning film The People’s Republic of Desire, at Doc NYC

11/15 – Museum of Chinese in America Gala and Gala after party hosted by the Junior Advisory Board

11/15 – 11/17 – A documentary performance that reinterprets the Cultural Revolution using the Red Detachment of Women as a starting point at Asia Society.   Email us by 11:59 PM, Tuesday, 11/6 for your chance to win tickets to the 11/15 performance.

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Our weekly listing includes open calls and other opportunities for artists, filmmakers, and others involved with Chinese culture in this intro section.  Let us know if there’s anything that should be listed.

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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 us on 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 beyondchinatown@gmail.com.


UPCOMING EVENTS

1) Love from Stonewall – Support Marriage Equality in Taiwan – Marriage equality in Taiwan is under threat. That’s why supporters of equality in NYC are gathering at The Stonewall Inn – the birthplace of the gay liberation movement in the United States. We’ll learn more about the current situation and join together to raise resources for the local team in Taiwan working to defeat anti-LGBT ballot referenda on November 24th – so that Taiwan becomes the first country in Asia to win the freedom to marry. Together, we can help Taiwan make history.

Friday, November 2, 7 PM
The Stonewall Inn, 53 Christopher Street

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2) Lima (Peru) Conversations_session 3– Artists Ting Chaong-Wen (丁昶文) and Wu Chuan-Lun (吳權倫) will join curator Chun-Chi Wang (王俊琪) for a public conversation about their work, how contemporary art addresses relationships between human beings, animals, the plants, products, and objects and New York based artist Wayne Liu will join.

Friday, November 2, 7 PM
The Clemente Soto Vélez Cultural & Educational Center, 107 Suffolk St.

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3) Crowd Lu – Crowd Lu (born July 15, 1985) is a Taiwanese indie singer, songwriter, and composer. Due to a serious car accident in his first year at Tamkang University, Lu began learning to play guitar during his hospitalization. His musical style is included punk, rock, folk, lyrical. From 2008 to 2017, he released five albums and nine EPS. And Lu had his own first official concert, only 88 days after his hit CD came out. In 2009, Lu faced a similar pattern of success at the 20th Golden Melody Awards, as he won the “Best Newcomer” and “Best Composer” awards. In 2016, he held his fourth concert at Taipei Arena, in which more than 10,000 people attended. He also participated in many foreign music festivals, including Summer Sonic, Clockenflap in Hong Kong, Modern Sky Strawberry Music Festival, Green Fort Music Music Festival, AMC Music Festival, Simple Living Festival, Ocean Music Festival, Great Rainbow Music Festival and so on. In the past two years, he held four LIVE concerts in Tokyo and Oscar and he was auditioned as the main actor in a Taiwan Drama which is called the Qseries. In 2017, he was nominated for the 28th Golden Melody Awards of Best Male Vocalist—Mandarin. And recently won two Awards for “Best Single of the Year” and “Best Composer” for his song “He-R” in the 29th Golden Melody Awards. Lu continued to use his music to infect the world!

Friday, November 2, 7 PM
Sunday, November 4, 7 PM
Public Arts, 215 Chrystie Street

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4) Intimate Confessions of a Chinese Courtesan 《愛奴》– “If you boil it down to its bare elements, Intimate Confessions of a Chinese Courtesan is a simple revenge story. At the same time, it’s something of a revisionist version of the simple revenge story, as the film’s plot plays out far different than any previous Shaw Brothers revenge film (and believe me, there were a lot of those!). The film is also gorgeously well-directed by the one and only Chor Yuen, who is able to construct an artful, rousing melodrama from the base elements of a trashy genre film. It’s something to behold.

“Chor Yuen takes many disparate elements — both trashy and thoughtful — and brings them together for a film unlike anything I’ve seen. It’s part wuxia, part rape/revenge, part prostitution melodrama, part exploitation, part mystery, and part cat-and-mouse thriller, and it does all of these simultaneously and perfectly. It’s a rare film that can successfully bring two genres together, but Intimate Confessions of a Chinese Courtesan is an ambitious film that achieves it all, and artfully as well. You may have seen this story in film before, but I doubt you’ve seen it told as succinctly and entertaining as it was in Intimate Confessions of a Chinese Courtesan. Highly recommended to anyone interested in world cinema.” (Silver Emulsion)
Dir. Chor Yuen
1972, Hong Kong, 86 min.

Screens as part of IFC’s Shaw brothers retrospective, Shaw Brothers Spectaculars: Presented in Glorious Shaw-Scope through Dec 29, 2018.

Friday, November 2, 11:59 PM
Saturday, November 3, 11:59 PM
IFC Center, 323 6th Ave

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5) Egg and Stone 《雞蛋和石頭》– A soul-baring autobiographical work drawing directly from director Huang’s own life, Egg and Stone is set in the rural Hunan province village of her youth, portraying the struggles of a 14-year-old girl, Honggui (Honggui Yao, leading an adept cast of nonprofessionals), living with an aunt and uncle, and left to come to terms with her blossoming sexual maturity without the benefit of parental guidance. Huang lovingly captures the textures of the world of her girlhood, while pulling no punches in portraying the routine misogyny and body shame of that same world.

Dir. Huang Ji
2012, China, 97 min.

Q&A with Huang Ji follows the screening.

Part of the series Spring Dreams: The Cinema of Huang Ji and Yang Lina, part of the Creative China Festival 2018.  Supported by the Beijing Contemporary Art Foundation

Saturday, November 3, 5:30 PM
Metrograph, 7 Ludlow Street

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6) 天问 TIAN WEN: Heavenly Questions for Modern Times – Inspired by a classic Chinese poem, Tian Wen is an experimental puppetry performance featuring living sculpture, stylized movement, and live music. The individual pieces – or dreams – explore the differences in feelings, concerns, and behaviors between East and West that Hua Hua Zhang has observed during her artistic journey in America.

In the piece’s magical dreamscape, powerful images abound: beautiful lanterns, a mysterious balloon, a stunning bird that both agitates and inspires, rocks and skeletons that thrillingly come to life. Through these images, many themes are explored, including loneliness, competition, compassion, self-reflection, as well as the balance between love of self and love of other. Taken together, these powerful and evocative dreams grapple with difficult questions we face in modern times.

Part of the LaMaMa Puppet Festival

Saturday, November 3, 8:30 PM
Sunday, November 4, 3 PM
Monday, November 5, 7 PM
Ellen Stewart Theatre, 2nd Floor, 66 E 4th Street

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7) Foolish Bird 《笨鳥》– Returning to the subject of China’s “left-behind children”—sent to live with relatives while their parents seek better paying work elsewhere—Huang crafts the intimate, troubling tale of Lynn (Honggui Yao, returning), a teenager trying to find her way in the dead-end Hunan province town where she lives with her grandparents, hemmed in on all sides by seemingly insurmountable social barriers, routine abuse of power, and the threat of sexual violence, her only refuge her friendship with another local girl, May (Fang Yao). Grimly grand, and as tough as the truth.

Dir. Huang Ji
2017, China, 118 min.

Q&A with Huang Ji follows the screening.

Sunday, November 4, 1:45 PM
Metrograph, 7 Ludlow Street

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8) Longing for the Rain 《春夢》– Yang had to shoot her fiction feature debut in Hong Kong, knowing that Chinese censors wouldn’t approve the subject matter of her erotically charged drama. Comfortable housewife Fang Lei (Siyuan Zhao) has achieved the “Chinese Dream” spoken of by Xi Jinping, but something is missing—something she can’t qualify until the vision of a consummate lover appears to her in dreams, and her craving for his touch begins to take over her waking life. A new gloss on the Chinese ghost story, a taboo acknowledgement of spiritual starvation in the nouveau riche middle classes, and a scathing indictment of patriarchal society.

Dir. Yang Lina
2013, China, 95 min.

Sunday, November 4, 4:30 PM
Metrograph, 7 Ludlow Street

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9) Why is Sci Fi So Hot in China? – China Institute partners with Tor Books and the Strand Bookstore to welcome Cixin Liu to New York, in a rare opportunity to hear from this internationally acclaimed author in conversation with New Yorker columnist Jiayang Fan and get a signed copy of his standalone novel, Ball Lightning.

Cixin Liu is a leading voice in science fiction, representing the new generation of Chinese science fiction authors who have burst onto the literary scene. He was awarded the China Galaxy Science Fiction Award for eight consecutive years, from 1999 to 2006 and again in 2010. His representative work The Three-body Problem won the Hugo Award for Best Novel, and was praised as “wildly imaginative” by former President Barack Obama.

Liu’s works have received wide acclaim on account of their powerful atmosphere and imagination; his stories combine the ephemeral with hard reality, while focusing on revealing the essence and aesthetics of science. Ball Lightning is the story of what happens when the beauty of scientific inquiry runs up against the drive to harness new discoveries with no consideration of their possible consequences.

Monday, November 5, 7 PM
China Institute, 40 Rector Street

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10) Wu Man and Taipei Chinese Orchestra – Sketches of Taiwan – Pipa virtuoso Wu Man leads the Taipei Chinese Orchestra’s debut at Carnegie Hall. The ensemble, conducted by Cheng Li-Pin, will present four U.S. premieres. Founded in 1979, the Taipei Chinese Orchestra is a traditional Chinese instrument orchestra in Taiwan.

We are able to offer a pair of tickets in a raffle! Send an email with the subject Wu Man and Taipei Chinese Orchestra to beyondchinatown@gmail.com by 11:59 PM Friday, and we’ll pick a winner to attend this vivacious concert.

Tuesday, November 6, 8 PM
Stern Auditorium, Carnegie Hall

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11) Sweet & Sour: Chinese Food and Immigrant Identity – What is the role of cooking and cuisine in the making of Chinese-American culture and identity? Inspired by the Museum of the City of New York’s exhibition Interior Lives: Contemporary Photographs of Chinese New Yorkers, Jack Tchen, founder of the Museum of Chinese in America, moderates a conversation with leading restaurateurs: Lien Lin, owner and executive chef of Brooklyn’s Bricolage NYC; Wilson Tang, owner of the famed Nom Wah Tea Parlor in Manhattan’s Chinatown that dates back to 1920; and Jason Wang, CEO of Xi’an Famous Foods, now a chain of 13 restaurants originally founded by Wang’s father as a food stall in the Golden Mall in Flushing, Queens.

Wednesday, November 7, 6:30 PM
Museum of the City of New York, 1220 5th Ave

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12) The Magnificent Peony Dreams: Yin Mei – Installation Performance – Join for a day exploring the works and vision of Yin Mei, Chinese-American choreographer, performer, director, and professor of Dance at Queens College, CUNY in conversation with visiting scholars and professors from China as part of the exchange partnership between Shanghai Theatre Academy (STA, China), the Theatre Department at the Graduate Center, CUNY, and the Martin E. Segal Theatre Center.

Thursday, November 8, 6:30 PM
Martin E. Segal Theatre Center, 365 5th Ave.

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13) The Foods of Yunnan – A panel discussion with Georgia Freedman, author of Cooking South of the Clouds—Recipes and Stories from China’s Yunnan Province and Simone Tong, chef of Little Tong Noodle Shops, moderated by Kian Lam Kho, author of Phoenix Claws and Jade Trees.

China’s Yunnan Province is the most geographically, biologically, and ethnically diverse region in China. Stretching from the Himalayan plateau to the subtropics, the province is home to thousands of species of plants and animals as well as twenty-four of China’s minority groups. As a result, Yunnan is one of the most culinary interesting and delicious places on earth, with a wide variety of cuisines and flavors all packed into one small province. Join for a discussion of what makes Yunnan’s foods so unique along with stories and photos from the panelists’ travels in the region.

The evening will include:
– A book signing for Georgia Freedman’s newly release cookbook, Cooking South of the Clouds—Recipes and Stories from China’s Yunnan Province (books available for purchase)
– Samples of tea from Harney & Sons Fine Teas
– Spirits from Ming River Baijiu
– Food available for purchase from Little Tong Noodle Shop

Thursday, November 8, 6:30 PM
Museum of Chinese in America


ONGOING FILMS, SHOWS, AND EVENTS

1) The Chinese Lady  – Inspired by the true story of the first Chinese female to step foot in America, The Chinese Lady is a tale of dark poetic whimsy and a unique portrait of the United States as seen through the eyes of a young Chinese woman. In 1834, Afong Moy is brought from China to America and put on display as The Chinese Lady for a paying public hungry for the exotic mysteries of the East.

Written by Lloyd Suh
Directed by Ralph B. Peña
a co-production of Ma-Yi Theater Company and Barrington Stage Company

Previews 11/7 – 11/9; Opens 11/10

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2) Project Gutenberg 《無雙》– The Hong Kong police is hunting a counterfeiting gang led by a mastermind code-named ‘Painter’ (Chow Yun-fat). The gang possesses exceptional counterfeiting skills which makes it difficult to distinguish the authenticity of its counterfeit currency. The scope of their criminal activities extends globally and greatly attracts the attention of the police. In order to crack the true identity of ‘Painter’, the police recruits a painter named Lee Man (Aaron Kwok) to assist in solving the case.

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3) Crazy Rich Asians – The first film since The Joy Luck Club 25 years ago to feature an all-Asian cast is a rom-com based on Singaporean American writer Kevin Kwan’s best-selling book of the same name.

Rachel Chu is happy to accompany her longtime boyfriend, Nick, to his best friend’s wedding in Singapore. She’s also surprised to learn that Nick’s family is extremely wealthy and he’s considered one of the country’s most eligible bachelors. Thrust into the spotlight, Rachel must now contend with jealous socialites, quirky relatives and something far, far worse — Nick’s disapproving mother.

At local multiple theaters in the New York area


ART EXHIBITIONS

Group Shows, Local Artists, and Other Art Events:

Artist Qiren Hu‘s installation American Ginseng which “further[s] the dialogue about value, belief systems, notions of meaning, authenticity, and consumer desire that evolve from market constructs”; science and tech inspired artist Ani Liu; Mo Kong who talks about politics in coded geologic form and weather narratives; photographer Arthur Ou; and Christine Wong Yap will be part of Queens International 2018 at the Queens Museum which runs from October 7, 2018 – February 24, 2019.

Qiren Hu – ‘American Ginseng’

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Next time you’re in the Times Square or Grand Central subway stations, take the S Train shuttle and see artist MengChih Chiang‘s (孟芝江) Taiwan-themed design for the train done for the Taiwan Tourism Bureau and possibly win roundtrip tickets to Taiwan by taking a photo of yourself with the wrapped S train and post the photo on Instagram between Monday, October 1 – Friday, November 2 (updated) with the hashtags #taiwanstrain and @ttb_na.

View this post on Instagram

Taiwanese artist and designer MengChih Chiang (江孟芝, @mengchih) brings Taiwan to New York with her vibrant transformation of the shuttle train that runs between Times Square and Grand Central Terminal. Her design completely envelopes the exterior and interior of the three-car train with eye-catching colors, images, and symbols that evoke the island nation. On the outside of the cars, a unique shade of red and blue-green mountains serve as the backdrop for recreations of oil painting portraits of aboriginal Taiwanese by contemporary aboriginal artist Yosifu (優席夫). The inside walls are covered a floral pattern associated with Chinese textiles which in fact come from Hakka culture and were popularized by Taiwan's textile industry in the 1950s and 1960s. The seats have also been made to resemble rattan furniture. The design will be up until 10/28 and is tied to a promotion by the Taiwan Tourism Bureau (@ttb_na) in which Eva Airways (@evaairways) and China Airlines (@chinaairlines.usa) are giving away two round trip tickets to those who 1) take a photo of the train, 2) post on Instagram and tag with #taiwanstrain and @ttb_na, and 3) make their feed public. Official rules: http://goog.gl/TDLKhL _ #mengchihchiang #mengchih #yosifu #taiwan #heartofasia #theheartofasia #taiwantourism #grandcentral #grandcentralterminal #timessquare #mta #subway #nyc #travel #publicart #travel #travelblogger #traveladdict #tourism

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Visit Chen Dongfan’s Doyers Street street mural, The Song of Dragon and Flowers

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Opening and Newly Listed:

Let us know about any upcoming shows

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Closing soon:

Shang Yang: New Works (Chambers Fine Art, 9/15 – 11/3)

Chow Chun Fai (Eli Klein Gallery, 9/8 – 11/17)

Shen Chen – Tradition and the Individual Talent (Fu Qiumeng Fine Art, 9/21 – 11/21)

Metamorphosis: Liu Dan’s Fantastic Landscape and the Renaissance (Nicholas Hall, 9/13 – 11/23)

Current shows:

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

Shang Yang: New Works (Chambers Fine Art, 9/15 – 11/3)

Chow Chun Fai (Eli Klein Gallery, 9/8 – 11/17)

Shen Chen – Tradition and the Individual Talent (Fu Qiumeng Fine Art, 9/21 – 11/21)

Metamorphosis: Liu Dan’s Fantastic Landscape and the Renaissance (Nicholas Hall, 9/13 – 11/23)

Huang Rui: Zen Space (Boers-Li Gallery, 10/26 – 12/8)

Hai Chang – The eye is not satisfied with seeing (Miyako Yoshinaga, 11/1 – 12/8)

The Preservation of Fire: On Lines and Materials (Crossing Art, 10/19 – 12/15)

Wei Jia – A Way of Life (Fou Gallery, 10/13 – 12/23)

Christopher K. Ho: Aloha to the World (Bronx Museum, 10/3/18 – 1/6/19)

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

Rhythm of Time: Chinese Contemporary Printmaking Exhibition in New York (New York Gallery of Chinese Art, 10/27/18 – 1/27/19)

Chia-Wei Hsu: Black and White – Malayan Tapir (ISCP, 10/30/18 – 1/25/19)

Qiren Hu AniLiu; Mo KongArthur Ou; and Christine Wong Yap at Queens International 2018  (Queens Museum, (10/7 /18 – 2/24/19)

Radical Machines: Chinese in the Information Age (Museum of Chinese in America, 10/18/18 – 3/24/19)

Interior Lives: Photographs of Chinese Americans in the 1980s by Bud Glick (Museum of Chinese in America, 10/18/18 – 3/24/19)

Interior Lives: Contemporary Photographs of Chinese New Yorkers (Museum of the City of New York, 10/26/18 – 3/24/19)


Lead image: Seen at Wuhan University