Art Basel in Hong Kong Reveals Film Sector Details

The program includes superstar artists on film.

Film still from William Kentridge's 10 Drawing For Projection (1989-2011) Photo: Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg/Cape Town
Art Basel Hong Kong has revealed its film program. Photo: Photo: courtesy Art Basel, Hong Kong.

Art Basel Hong Kong has revealed its film program.
Photo: Photo: courtesy Art Basel, Hong Kong.

Beijing and Zurich-based multimedia artist and producer Li Zhenhua returns to curate the film sector of Art Basel Hong Kong 2016, the fair announced on Wednesday.

For the first time, the 2016 film sector has been expanded to include five feature-length and documentary films in addition to 67 short films, exploring six different and diverse themes.

This year—for the first time—the feature-length film sector has also been placed in the fair’s primary venue at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Center, making the film program more accessible than ever.

Film still from William Kentridge's 10 Drawing For Projection (1989-2011) Photo: Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg/Cape Town

Film still from William Kentridge’s 10 Drawing For Projection (1989-2011)
Photo: Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg/Cape Town

Encompassing films by and about artists, the program includes spans a wide spectrum of genres from documentaries to video artworks.

Highlights include feature length presentations of The Chinese Lives of Uli Sigg (2016), a documentary by Michael Schindhelm about the Swiss mega-collector of Chinese art and how he found himself in the middle of Chinese history following Mao’s death; unexpectedly leading him to a career in diplomacy and entrepreneurship.

Directors Shi Li-Sanderson and Philipp Stölzl analyze the artistic practice of the distinguished artist Zeng Fanzhi in Zeng Fanzhi: YOU Art Project (2014–15).

Elsewhere William Kentridge’s 10 Drawings for Projection (1989–2011) traces the artist’s observations of South Africa’s transition from apartheid to democracy. The film disregards politics, focusing instead on the changes in the life of the film’s main character.

Film still from Ju Anqi's Poet on a Business Trip (2014) Photo: Art Basel Hong Kong

Film still from Ju Anqi’s Poet on a Business Trip (2014)
Photo: Art Basel Hong Kong

Takashi Murakami’s Jellyfish Eyes (2013) brings Murakami’s trademark colorful manga-infused characters to screen in a story set in small village in rural Japan. The film references the Fukushima nuclear meltdown and Murakami imagines how children save the fictional world from disaster.

Underground Beijing-based filmmaker Ju Anqi’s satire Poet on a Business Trip follows the adventures of the port Shu, who decides to take a 40-day train journey across the entire province of Xinjiang, China. The ironic title reflects the film’s satirical absurdity.

Meanwhile the short program—which takes place at the agnés b. Cinema at Hong Kong Arts Center—presents video artworks by international stars including Christian Jankowski, Joan Jonas, John Akomfrah and many others.

See the full Art Basel Hong Kong Film sector program here.


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