Thursday, 20 March 2014 00:00

End of Lines - A Photo exhibition in Shanghai by Liz Hingley

Liz Hingley came to Shanghai in June 2013, twenty years after line 1 of Shanghai's metro opened. It is now the second largest metro system in the world and transports an average of more than 7 million people daily. She was fascinated by how its development has dramatically changed the city's social, economic and geographical structure. Liz spent two months traveling to every metro terminus to document the landscapes and communities at the peripheries of Shanghai's urban sprawl. The work was published as part of the Portrait De Villes book series in November 2013. Liz is also curating the 'Mapping Shanghai' talk and workshop series at K11 Shanghai Art Space.


《 End Of Lines 》INFORMATION
• Opening Party: 7pm Friday April 18th 2014
• Exhibition Date: Saturday April 19th 2014 – Sunday May 18th 2014
• Opening Hours: [Every day] 13:00-19:00 * Closed on national holidays
• Venue: ONE
• Address: #201, Bldg 5, 831 JiangNing Road, JingAn District, Shanghai
• Entry fee: Free of charge
• Enquiry: +86 (0)21 3131 7023 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. / http://www.one-magazine.net/
• Curator, Design and Organizer: ONE

 

Liz Hingley

Liz Hingley is a renowned photographer, researcher and member of Agence Vu. She holds a first class BA Honors in Photography and an MSc in Social Anthropology with distinction from University College London. Her work has received numerous awards including the Getty Image Grant, Prix Virginia and Photophilanthropy Activist Award. During a two-year scholarship with Fabrica in Italy she made the work "Under Gods " which was published by Dewi Lewis in 2011 and became an internationally touring solo exhibition.
She moved to Shanghai in June 2013 to continue her work on multi-faith urban communities at the invitation of the Ricci Institute at Fudan University and as a visiting scholar of Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences.

http://www.lizhingley.com/

http://portraitsdevilles.fr/

 

Read an interview about her project on eRenlai:

http://www.erenlai.com/en/extensions/spiritual-computing/a-spiritual/item/5451-an-interview-with-liz-hingley

Published in
Events

Tuesday, 12 November 2013 13:33

An Interview with Liz Hingley

Liz Hingley is a British photographer who holds a first class BA Honours in Photography from Brighton University. Her work has been recognized with many international awards, including the Prix Virginia in 2012. She is currently living in Shanghai and working on her new project in the city. On an interview with her over Skype, we discuss her experiences in Shanghai. 


Friday, 22 June 2012 00:00

Celebrating 450 years of Xu Guangqi

Interview first published in Xuhui News (Vol.2, N.9, April 2012), by Guan Xin

What does it mean to commemorate the 450th anniversary of the birth of Xu Guangqi? What values should it lead us to promote?

Xu Guangqi was a man of extraordinary stature: a statesman thoroughly familiar with the Chinese philosophical and cultural tradition; a man of practical abilities fascinated by technical and scientific progress; an agriculturist who embarked on this field out of philanthropic concerns; a patriot endowed with military skills… but he was also someone who, in the person of Matteo Ricci and other Jesuit missionaries, discovered Otherness. He was able to challenge himself, to enter into a new understanding of existence, while remaining deeply faithful to the best of his culture and his personality. From the start, he realized a synthesis between different traditions and worldviews. So, when we commemorate his life, we are reminded that a healthy sense of identity goes with a strong capacity to understand and empathize with the other, to put oneself into question, and to creatively invent news ways of thinking and acting.

What has been the contribution of Xu Guangqi in the field of religion?

He is traditionally called “one the three great pillars of the Chinese Catholic Church”, together with the scholars Yang Tingyun and Li Zizhao. These scholars embraced the new faith and were actively promoting the participation of the Western missionaries in fields such as the reform of the Imperial calendar. At the same time, they were deeply anchored into the Confucian tradition, which they wanted to reform and purify, and they found in Catholicism the completion of what they thought was the original moral and theistic Confucian original worldview. Though their relationship with Buddhism was an uneasy and complex one, one can also find elements of Buddhist philosophy in their formation. In that sense, their contribution is also interreligious: in their written works they were offering a new expression of the Chinese religious psyche. Suring the last decade, these works have been republished, and they are object of intense interest for scholars. The complete works of Xu Guangqi have just been published in Shanghai.

The friendship and cooperation between Xu Guangqi and Matteo Ricci was great and profound. We are now facing a “smaller” planet due to globalization and intense cross culture communication. Doe their ideal and the model they offer keep some significance for us today?

When Xu Guangqi and Ricci were alive, communication among civilizations was minimal. Now, we have sometimes “too much’ of it, in the sense that clichés, superficial communication and conflicts of interests are often perverting our exchanges. Still, Ricci and Xu Guangqi remind us that in-depth communication is always to be grounded into patience, friendship and humility. Patience: it takes time to truly enter into a language and a new system of thought and perception, as there are no shortcuts for being truly “conversant’ with the other; Friendship; empathy and curiosity are the virtues that makes communication among human beings valuable and creative; humility: being able to critically evaluate one’s culture and personality is indispensable for a grateful appreciation of what the cultures and people we encounter may offer to us. In this respect, one can almost say that Xu Guangqi and Matteo Ricci are still the two pillars on which to build a positive model of globalization!


Photo by Roberto Ribeiro. Xu Guangqi Park, Shanghai.
Bronze statue of Matteo Ricci and Paul Xu Guangxi.
Together, Ricci and Paul Xu Guangxi translated and published some essential works of western science.

 


Wednesday, 09 November 2011 11:51

Breathing and Painting

"What I try to paint is the very breathing that makes me paint." This is the way Benoit Vermander introduced his works during the opening of his exhibit at DPARK, Shanghai (November 5-30). The seventy ink and oil paintings gathered in this beautiful location were mainly organized around three topics: faces, birds and forest. But each time, explained Benoit, the underlying element was the breeze - the inner breeze that makes the face change and come anew to the light of the day; the breeze that supports the flight of the bird; the breeze that makes the forest palpitate and become the place where one wishes to wander and lose oneself.

Chinese paintings and oil paintings seemed to be melting into one, as the one and the same breath guides the hand that painted them, beyond differences in techniques and cultural undertones. The breath of the painter became the one inhaled by the visitors who had come to take new strength and inspiration in a show made even more poetic by the large windows of the main exhibit room, opening up on a landscape of high-rise buildings and slowly balancing bamboos....

bendu_shanghai_dpark_02

bendu_shanghai_dpark_03

bendu_shanghai_dpark_04

 


Tuesday, 27 September 2011 11:37

Sleeping people in Shanghai

Adrien Roger is a young French photographer living in Shanghai. He is featured this month on the virtual art gallery: Ipagine.com. He comments and explains his series entitled "sleeping people in Shanghai"  (Watch it here.)

"I was born in the suburb of Paris, and I live now in Shanghai. I always liked cameras but I realized rather late that it could not be a job. I started working in a studio specialized in fashion, and, at the same time, I did some traveling, mainly in Africa.


Thursday, 30 June 2011 16:37

A Flâneur's peek at Shanghai

The term flâneur comes from the french verb flâner, which ever since Baudelaire appropriated the word and gave it the extended meaning as a way of truly experiencing, appreciating the city as one walks. Indeed when we have a bit of time to explore the world we are all flâneurs, and not least of all the eRenlai team are certainly flâneurs without frontiers. But rather than Baudelairean strolls through Paris, the old eRenlai team and their sister organization AZ Cultural Enterprise spent much time over the last two years going back and forth to Shanghai. Their adventures, however, were more than just aimless strolls latching on to pretty thoughts; the team came back to Taipei having completed not one but three outstanding documentaries on Shanghai which are excusively offered to you in this Focus - A Flâneur's peek at Shanghai.

Liang Zhun first takes us on a stroll down Lane 1025, Nicolas Priniotakis looks for the rarest pearls of Chinese ethnic music and instruments in Seaside Seranade and Benoit manages to get a way from the hustle and bustle of central Shanghai and finds the ultimate spot for peaceful contemplation in Suzhou’s gardens.

Ida also feels the nostalgia of a 21st Century flâneuse, in a state of liminality between her years of studying and appreciating the language, arts and glory of France and the French, and a return to the lost Mainlander heritage in Shanghai, where paradoxically, the glory of the France is reduced to magnificent leftover architecture in the French concession. She was moved, but confused in the melting pot of people and architectures that is contemporary Shanghai. Similarly, Mei Fang-tsai had many identity questions to face during her time living in Shanghai as a so called "Tai-ba-zi".  Even Paul was left with identity questions during the 2010 World Expo-lent Australian adventure as he observed his country's pavillion as a semi outsider, looking at people, looking at Australia, the way Australia wanted them to look...

Photo by Ida Yang


Thursday, 30 June 2011 15:27

Nostalgia of a 21st Century Flâneuse

Wondering the streets of Shanghai is sentimental, whoever you are. If you are a tourist or passenger who has visited Shanghai several times, you might sigh that this attractive city is developing too fast, and every time you visit, you can’t recognize what it used to be. If you are a resident, you might be proud of this modern city, but also regard this city with other complex feelings concerning Shanghai’s tumultuous history. If you are a worker from other provinces of China, this huge city might bring you deep nostalgic feelings. The second and third conditions are my imagination, because I am only a tourist from Taipei who is neither resident nor worker. I am also a 21st century flâneuse tribute to Baudelaire. Loafing around in this city, surrounded by the parasol trees (梧桐樹wutong shu), I was under the impression 19th century French flâneur reincarnated in Shanghai. The French concession is mainly in Luwan and Xuhui Districts. I visited no.319 Yueyang Road (岳陽路), where the Former Consulate of France (法國領事館) (pic.1)(pic.2)is situated. On the same road, at no.145, is a French-style garden residence, which is the former residence of T. V. Soong (宋子文). Besides these European residences, there is also some modernist architecture. Most of these buildings were built by Hungarian architect L.E.Hudec.(pic.3) who lived in Shanghai for about 30 years.

This city is a melting pot for an enormous amount of different styles. It’s blissful, but also confusing. Strolling through different areas, it seems like travelling around in different countries. In The Bund, I can see a row of beautiful architecture from different cultures.  It’s an embodiment of different imperialist powers, which let Qing government cede some territory in order to pay off its indemnities. Yet, Shanghai’s ignominious history, just makes the city more glamorous.

ida_shanghai_flaneuse_2

 

ida_shanghai_flaneuse_4

(Photos: Ida Yang)

 


 

[1] T.V.Soong was at a former Chinese Premier in 1930 and was in a highly influential position throughout the Nationalist era. His three sisters were married to presidents Chiang Kai-shek, Sun Yat-sen and China’s former richest man H.H. Kung.

 


Wednesday, 01 December 2010 00:00

Matteo Ricci, spiritual resources and partnership

At the conference "Dialogue among Civilizations and Global Challenges" held in Shanghai in 2010, friend of eRenlai and former managing director of the IMF, Michel Camdessus, provided the starting point for a discussion on intercultural dialogue,  inspired by Matteo Ricci and Xu Guangqi. He first gave a speech on the secret of Matteo Ricci:


 

Professor Choong Chee Pang from the Oxford Institute for Asian Society and Religion gave a response to Michel's wise words, particularly focusing on the importance of China's cultural and spiritual resources in contrast to the factors economic, political and military might that are usually focused on:


Wednesday, 06 October 2010 18:13

An Expo-lent Australian Adventure

In early September I spent a day at the Shanghai Expo.  Bracing myself for crowds of up to 300,000 jostling queue-jumpers, I was relieved that the venue was not too packed. Most pavilions (especially later in the day) did not require any considerable time lining up.  The vast number of unused crowd barriers snaking around entrances that I bypassed at various stages of the day were testament to just how bad the queues might have been.  That said, there were still a hell of a lot of people there.

Arriving a little too late to snap up the special tickets required for China’s gargantuan pavilion (a great design actually, and one that I hope primary school kids around the world can mimic with Paddle Pop sticks), I had to settle for some of the less grandiose pavilions.

The South Korea pavilion had a great mix of 3D and interactive technology, all set to an infectious K-Pop soundtrack.  The hosts remained unflinchingly gracious in the face of relentless questioning (“Are you really Korean? REALLY? But how can you possibly speak such good Chinese?”), even managing to diffuse a vicious brawl between two frazzled and possibly queued-out ladies in the theatrette.

The India pavilion offered a snapshot of Indian civilisation from ancient times through to the recent period of economic development, but my lasting memory was of the handicraft bazaar and the tantalising smells from the curry kitchen that seduced guests meandering around the venue.

The Singapore pavilion was slick, if somewhat forgettable, and the Denmark pavilion had the actual Little Mermaid statue, shipped all the way over to China, and some bikes for visitors to cruise around on.

All good stuff but in spite of the smorgasbord of global morsels that were at my finger tips, the one pavilion I really itched to visit was that of the land of my birth – Australia.  Not just to reconnect, but to see how Australia had decided to pitch itself to what former Prime Minster Kevin Rudd famously called it’s “true friend (zhēngyǒu)”.

pf_shanghai_expo_1Upon arriving at the giant undulating pavilion, which looks a bit like a corrugated tin off-cut left to rust in a paddock, I was able to breeze in through the door, unhindered by any queue. Here I was greeted by a friendly Akubra-clad avuncular type with “G’day! When watching the movie, you might wanna sit at the back so you can see the subtitles”.  Thanks for the tip, mate.

Spiralling up a ramp around the inside of the pavilion I was treated to a potted history of Australia in series of cute dioramas. Unsurprisingly, there was an emphasis on the relationship between Australia and China.  If you were looking for any information about Aboriginal Australians, you had to wait for the last section, where the landmark 2008 apology to ‘the stolen generations’ was highlighted.

Australia’s first inhabitants were excluded from the diorama of when the English landed in Australia.  Instead of Aboriginals, as are normally included in such stylised versions of this event, the pompous-looking Englishmen were confronted with a stick-waving Koala and a stern Kangaroo with crossed arms.  Crikey!  Look at claws on that one!

While there were brief explanations of the diorama scenes, no one really seemed to be paying much attention to them. Unlike the other more hi-tech pavilions I visited, there were certainly no snazzy gizmos here to keep the punters entertained.  The crowd hurriedly snapped photos of each of the dioramas and then barrelled on up the ramp, to where though, no one seemed to know.

pf_shanghai_expo_3As it turned out, at the top of the ramp was the theatrette, where we were rounded up like cattle (how very Australian).  Once in the proverbial cattle yard, some burly Aussie bloke did his best to keep us placated until the next screening, cracking jokes in Chinese and exhorting us to be orderly “for your own safety”.  I found this guy to be pretty funny, but the people around me seemed mainly to be sniggering at his pronunciation.  Perhaps something was lost in translation.  I’m not sure how well the average Chinese person understands the Australian sense of humour.  Some didn’t seem to understand his safety instructions either, with a couple of people trying to push through the queue, even though there was a closed door at the end of it and we had been told that there were enough seats in the theatre for everyone.  The queues at the Expo were generally much more orderly than I expected based on my previous experiences lining up at various Chinese train stations and tourist venues. Nevertheless, some people still found the need to fruitlessly try to push through, only succeeding in pissing everyone else off. I’m surprised that I didn’t see more fights on the day.

The Australian movie was passable, but nowhere near the level of South Korea’s all singing, all dancing, roller coaster ride. Not that the crowd, many of whom were quite young, cared.  They all seemed very happy to be there.  The spritely attendant even managed to cajole them into chanting a mangled version of the dire Sydney Olympics-era chant “Aussie! Aussie! Aussie!”.

My favourite image from the movie was towards the beginning. Just after the characters had been introduced and the audience subjected to a montage of dodgy computer graphics, the side of an open-cut mine was spectacularly blown up.  This led in to a sequence of heavy machinery carting rocks out of the ground and onto the marketplace.  The market of course, as Australia’s recent recession-proof prosperity might testify to, is China.  What better symbol to represent Australia and China’s current relationship.  I loved it.

After the movie, we were herded down the ramp, out of the theatre and into the gift shop.  There was also some dinky-di Aussie tucker – meat pies, fish and chips, beer and other imported delicacies.  Despite my strong urge for a pie and sauce, it was all a bit pricey for me, so I skedaddled out the door and to find something a bit cheaper and possibly more tasty.

pf_shanghai_expo_4Judging by the chirpy crowds hanging around in the foyer and checking out the tacky merchandise for sale, I think the organisers had a done a good job.  The primarily Chinese guests seemed happy.  However, the Australian government wants to do more than just flog off a couple of overpriced fluffy kangaroos and tinnies of VB.  The real impact of the pavilion will be felt in the years to come, as Chinese students head to Australian universities or Chinese and Australian companies enter into business deals.

While appearing to be solid, Australia's relationship with China is not without hiccups. The level of China-awareness among the Australian public is low and at times paranoid.  My only lasting memory of China from my childhood education is of the prospectors who came out to Australia in the Gold Rush of the 1850s.  A reciprocal Chinese pavilion in downtown Sydney or Melbourne might help raise the general level of awareness of our looming northern neighbour.  You wouldn't get the full story on China, that's for sure, but at least it would be a start.  However, it is not only the Chinese government that emphasises some aspects of the country at the expense of others in order to paint an attractive picture.

Staging the Australian Expo pavilion in China means pitching the message to a Chinese audience.  If the 2010 Expo was being held in Australia, the pavilion would undoubtedly be significantly different. Australians can be very sensitive about how the nation broadcasts itself to foreign nations.  Witness the  domestic controversy generated by each new iteration of advertisements selling our wide brown land to the global tourist market.  Some Australians wish to entice foreigners with our cosmpolitan metropolises and sophisticated urban lifestyle, while others think that the beaches/bikinis/kangaroos/koalas model sells the nation best.  Given this unfortunate and out-dated dichotomy, those Australians affected by the dreaded  ‘cultural cringe’ would be best served by staying well away from the Australia pavilion.  Do yourself a favour and go to the South Korea pavilion instead.

{rokbox album=|myalbum|}images/stories/pf_shanghai_expo/*{/rokbox}

 


Monday, 13 September 2010 00:00

Europe-China Cooperation in the Digital Era by R. Prodi

On September 10, Romano Prodi, former president of the European Commission and former Italian Prime minister, was the guest of the Xu-Ricci Dialogue Institute at Fudan University, Shanghai. Together with Professor Melloni, director of the John XXII Foundation for Religious Science in Bologna, he was introducing to a Chinese audience the flagship project of the Foundation: a database regrouping the editions of all Ecumenical Church Councils, in all languages and writing systems in which they had been acted

What follows is a slightly abridged English version of the speech he pronounced in Italian on this occasion:


Tuesday, 29 September 2009 02:41

A Museum for Tushanwan

Shanghai World Fair comes with a surprise: The Tushanwan Museum, to be opened in May next year, celebrates the Tushanwan Training Studio and Orphanage established in 1852 by Jesuit missionaries. A project managed by the Xuhui District Cultural Bureau.

The founder of the workshop was the Jesuit Spanish Brother Juan Ferrer born near Valencia in 1817. His father had been a distinguished sculptor who had worked on the decoration of the Escorial Palace. He entered the Jesuit order in Naples where he was completing his artistic education and, on his request, was sent to China in 1847. He drew the blueprint of several churches of Shanghai and contributed in their decoration. With the approval of his superiors he founded a training workshop in Xujianhui (Zi-ka-wei), the domain where Jesuits in Shanghai were gathering their various works and schools, in 1852. The workshop educated outstanding Chinese sculptors and painters, working first for religious buildings and later on extending the range of its activities. Juan Ferrer died a premature death in 1856.

Other professors and artists at the orphanage included Brother Nicolas Massa (1815-1870) who taught oil painting, Brother Lu Baidu (1836-1880), Brother Adolphe Vasseur (1828-1899), and, most notably, Brother Liu Bizhen (1845-1912).

In 1864, an orphanage founded by the Jesuits was transferred to Tushawan (Tu-se-wé) on the periphery of the Xujiahui domain, and the workshop became a part of it, providing artistic and technical education to the orphans. Printing, woodwork, music and other trades were added to the curriculum.

Tushanwan played a key role in the development of modernism in Shanghai. The center had a casting plant, a printing press, a photolithography workshop and a stained-glass making facility. Tushanwan’s graduates often went on to teach other craftsmen and artists.

tusewei-8_rAround 1886, there were 342 orphans living in Tushanwan, 133 of them receiving a formation in the workshop. The trades taught then included woodwork, cobbing, tailoring, sculpture, gilding, varnishing, painting, weaving, engraving and printing. For a time, agriculture was part of the formation, but the experiment was interrupted. From 1870 on, book printing became one of the main activities of the workshop. After 1876, former students of the orphanage, working in different workshops around Shanghai, started to inhabit houses built nearby the orphanage, shaping a distinctive village life.

The sculptor Zhang Chongren, who was the friend of Hergé and was immortalized by him as the ’Tchang’ character of the Blue Lotus and Tintin in Tibet, was a pupil of the school and became later on the director of the Shanghai Arts Academy.

The last director of the workshop was another Spanish brother, native from San Sebastian, Jose Antonio Navascues (1910-1979). The son of a painter, he brought to the workshop his gift in this discipline and in the making of glass-window.

No doubt that the opening of the museum will give light to the international history of Shanghai and retrieve some of its diversity and uniqueness.

The Official Xuhui District Website



Saturday, 29 August 2009 02:42

Chinese music goes to the sea

The Traditional Chinese Music Orchestra is possibly Shanghai’s most exciting musical formation. While firmly rooted in tradition and relying on impressive scholarship, its musicians are also keen to introduce their public to new repertories, to mix up styles, times and places, and thus to display the diversity of China’s cultures. This is also a showcase of Shanghai’s spirit: where the river goes to the sea, all waters, all traditions mix up and take new dimensions and shapes. Shanghai has always been a place where cultures cross and fertilize in new, creative synthesis. There is something oceanic in the sound that comes from this orchestra as well as from the astounding variety of its repertory. Discover Chinese music as you never heard it before!

This documentary Seaside Serenade, Shanghai Traditional Chinese Music Orchestra was produced by AZ Cultural Enterprise in August 2009.


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