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Walls and WalnutsMar 10, 2020 An ongoing project in a collaboration with artists Zhangbolong Liu and Jialin Yang Exhibition: A Truck Is Parked in the Grass Near a Tree in DoubtJan 17, 2020 Exhibition of seven international projects concerning Beijing’s urban space and the effect and strategies of its changes. Talk No. 5: Seeing the OlympicsDec 7, 2019 Visual Communication and Image-Making. Talk No. 4: Green BeltNov 2, 2019 A common problem that cities all around the world are sharing is the growing urban pollution problem. A Thousand-Year StageAugust 2019 A Thousand-Year Stage (2019) is an experimental non-fiction film that features local residents of Xiongan New Area, Chinaʼs most recently planned megacity, awaiting its transformation. By Daphne Xu. Responding 回应July 2019 A group exhibition with Liu Shiyuan, Xiaofei Mo, Linyao Kiki Liu, Amy Suo Wu, Zhuxin Wang, Maj Horn, Scott William Raby, and The Social Sensibility Research & Development Department 合作工作站 Cooperation Lab:
ColorJune 2019 One-month residency in Baitasi, Beijing, “Color” is about seizing a special power as readers “read” a “text” of the given community than merely to establish a metaphorical connection to the site.
Research-Grants 2019April 2019 we are happy to have four artists/groups receiving our research grants for 2019 Talk No. 3: Ten Years AfterDec 14, 2018 In what way does the Beijing pre and post-Olympics Beijing differ? How are events like the Olympics utilized for a Chinese urbanization model? In This Moment 在这片刻Dec 7, 2018 a new body of photo works by Canadian artist John Monteith Residence: Jannis SchulzeAutumn 2018 Jannis Schulze is a photograper, born in 1987 in East Berlin and based in Berlin What do you see when you look out the window?Aug 27, 2018 an interactive photo book, published along with the exhibition »A Day in the Outer Ring 《环外游》« Residence: John MonteithAutumn 2018 with a focus on the reconstruction of the city, the topography and the "blank space" that preserve the traces of the city's history, John Monteith will be our resident in autumn 2018 Casting Haze, BaseAug 16, 2018 lecture performance and installation by Katrin Hornek Residence: Katrin HornekSummer 2018 Katrin Hornek’s work playfully engages with the strange paradoxes and convergences of living in the age of the Anthropocene. Uncut Talks: Alternative Spaces Under Pressure 2018 UNCUT TALKS will provide an un-edited, raw archive of opinions and ideas A Day in the Outer RingAug 11, 2018 collages in physical space - Sponge Gourd Collective Scenic tunnelJuly 21, 2018 translating the imaginaries of urban mapping into human forms - exhibition by Leng Yue and Xiao Xiao Staying away from the grass is humaneJul 6, 2018 A Collage of Intermediate Results by Johanna K. Becker Residence: Johanna K BeckerSummer 2018 Johanna K Becker focuses on finding “archaic” images of landscape and ideas of paradise which she sees as traditional manifestations, simulations and simulacra of landscape and nature and which she artistically recreates in a distinctively artificial manner. B-Side Festival EditionJun 20, 2018 Cultural Agents of Change - Urban Production and the Educational Turn Talk No. 2: Science FictionJun 9, 2018 Stories, dreams and myths create connections between people and places, they make space tangible and can arouse the desire to settle them. In the construction process of cities, ideas and thought experiments are just as essential a part as steel and concrete are. Research-Grants 2018April 2018 we are happy to have four artists/groups receiving our research grants for 2018 Residence: Rachele MaistrelloSpring 2018 »My works are encounters« Talk No. 1: PeripheriesJan 20, 2018 discussions on cities mostly focus on city cores and centers, while their peripheries only draw little attention 北京土行孙 Part 1/ Teleport Beijing Part 1Dec 18, 2017 exhibition by Leng Yue and Xiaoxiao Residence: Ute AdamczewskiAutum 2017 Ute Adamczewski is a video artist and filmmaker from Germany. Fantastic GroundsApril 17, 2017 architectural renderings form the cornerstone of public communication in contemporary architecture – an exhibition at I: project space by Jiu Jiu


A Thousand-Year Stage 千年舞台 by Daphne Xu

A Thousand-Year Stage (2019) is an experimental non-fiction film that features local residents of XionganNew Area, Chinaʼs most recently planned megacity, awaiting its transformation.

In this transitional moment in the history of the region, I center A Thousand-Year Stage on a similarly transient (non)place, the high-speed rail station. The film combines observational footage of local residents with staged performances on current and proposed high-speed rail stations in Xiongan New Area. Foregrounding the station and its occupants captures the physical and temporal collapsing of scales that occurs when a high-speed rail station is built at a scale far larger than its rural surroundings, cutting across landscapes at a speed much faster than the local pace of life.

I was drawn towards everyday theatrics, choreographies of labor, and acts of self-performance in Xiongan New Area. The sweet sentimentality of Chinese love songs performed in karaoke by local residents and migrant workers is situated in dialogue with the blankness of emptied landscapes waiting to be transformed, and the overtness of Chinese propaganda around the ideals for this site. The loud personalities of local livestreaming celebrities and the dance music they blast over fields and plazas creates an effect of disjunction, revealing a portrait of contemporary Chinese life not typically associated with rural China or on view in Western media. While filming, I allow my camera frame to become a stage, and I position local residents and migrant workers as performers.

With cities expanding at unimaginable rates to an unprecedented geographic scale, Chinese urbanization can be a marvel, but it is also a lived experience. What does it mean for Chinese people, both of Chinese citizenship and from the Sino diaspora, of which I identify, to experience change that is so rapid that the hometowns and motherlands of our family’s memories become unrecognizable overnight? With this question as a driving source of my curiosity, I began investigating the cultural impacts of rapid urbanization in China, specifically in the context of Xiongan New Area, in 2018. A Thousand-Year Stage is the beginning of a long-term project exploring and documenting the region’s transformation.

Website: Daphne Xu