The Hundred Flowers

'Let a hundred flowers bloom' is the slogan of Mao Zedong, which he used to launch an extensive campaign among Chinese intellectuals in 1957 calling for publicity and productive criticism of the government. However, having lasted no more than a year, it was wound up and eventually turned into a persecution and brutal repression of the opposition. It was then that the first laogai — 'reform through labor' camps and farms — were created. Traces, the only film by Wang Bing shot with the 35mm camera, depicts remnants of the Jiabangou and Mingshui camps in Gansu Province of China. The famous filmmaker makes a kind of visual cast of these sites of memory in search of traces of dramatic events related to mass hunger and cases of cannibalism. According to some historians, the campaign against the 'right-wing deviation' was the prerequisite of the Cultural Revolution, which lasted in China between 1966 and 1976. Breathless Animals by the Chinese director Lei Lei refers to the historical memory of this period differently — through the method of oral history. His attempt to recreate the experience of the day-to-day life during the complex social experiment is based on interviews with a witness and old photographs. However, Lei Lei demonstrates the work of memory, which is fragile by nature.


China, France | 2014 | 28 min
Wang Bing
Russian premiere
The film was shot on the site of the former camp of Mingshui at Zhang Ye in Gansu Province and on the site of the former camp of Jiabiangou at Jiuquan. In 2005, while doing preparatory on his film The Ditch, Wang Bing travelled to the Gobi Desert to the exact same places where thousands of people lived and died in the 'reeducation-through-labour' camps set up by the communist regime in the late 50s. He shot the site with a 35mm camera, depicting the scenes of desert and abandoned bones – a landscape doomed to disappear. Digitized and revised later, these images now provide excellent evidence of the events of those times, which have been virtually buried until 2010s.

Breathless Animals

China | 2019 | 68 min
Lei Lei
Russian premiere
«What did you dream about and how was your life as a teenager?» A woman recalls her youthful memories of her 1970's, while the re-creation of the modernity of the past of China unfolds in front of our eyes. One day, the first animal appears to her, a White horse...

Wang Bing

Wang Bing - (b. 1967, Xi'an, Shaanxi Province, China). Lives and works in China and France. In 1992, Wang Bing graduated in photography from the Luxum Arts University in Shenyang. For his photography work, he watched at length workers of the Tie Xi facility. In 1995, he studied at the Beijing Film Academy, then worked for some time on television before starting a career as an independent film director in 1998. West of the Tracks is Wang Bing's first documentary, filmed in 2002, for which he received numerous awards and grants. Since then, Wang Bing has produced many documentaries such as Three Sisters (2012), TA'ANG (2016), Coal Money (2016), as well as Mrs Fang (2017) and 15 Hours (2017), both exhibited during Documenta14 in Athens and Kassel in 2017. In 2017, he was awarded the Golden Leopard, highest award of the Concorso Internazionale of the Locarno Festival for the film Mrs Fang. That same year, he was also the recipient of the EYE Art & Film Prize in Amsterdam (The Netherlands), honouring his entire filmography. His work has been subject to numerous retrospectives, notably at the Centre Pompidou in 2014, and at the Museo Reina Sofía and Filmoteca Española, Madrid, in 2018.

Lei Lei

Lei Lei - (b. 1985, Nanchang, China). He graduated from Tsinghua University with a Master's degree in Animation in 2009. Since then, he has worked as an artist and independent animator. His works include short animation films This Is Love (Best Narrative Short Award at Ottawa International Film Festival in 2010), Recycled (selected at Annecy Film Festival, Grand Prix of Shorts & Non-Narrative Films at Holland International Animation Film Festival), and many others, which have been selected in numerous international festivals and exhibited in museums. In 2014 he served on the Jury of Zagreb / Holland International Animation Film Festival, and won the Asian Cultural Council Grant. Since 2017 he is a full time Faculty Member on Experimental Animation of CalArts Film & Video School. Furthermore, he has had solo exhibitions of his work in Beijing and Austria, and has also been a part of group exhibitions all over the world, in the U.S., Singapore, Netherlands, Canada, and China. Breathless Animals, his first feature length film, is to premiere at the Berlinale Forum 2019.
July 13
Illusion Cinema, 18+
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