Imaging the Avant-Garde: Program 4

Shorts program, running time 87 min.

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Program 4: Experimental Shorts from the 1960s

This program includes five films by artists who were indirectly involved in the 1960s artistic experiments. Theatre Quarterly not only delivered the latest news regarding the Western art world, but also functioned as a platform for artists to present their new creations. In the 1960s, Macao-born, Hong Kong-based film critic Law Kar and Hong Kong’s renowned writer Xi Xi both served briefly as editor of Theatre Quarterly, while making experimental films. In addition, Tom Davenport, an American independent filmmaker, spent years studying the Chinese language and culture in Taiwan, and was commissioned by National Geographic to film there. This program includes his first documentary, T’ai Chi Ch’uan, in which he filmed the philosopher Nan Huai-chin practicing Tai-chi on Taiwan’s northeastern coast. The last two shorts provide an indirect view of the artistic achievements of Theatre Quarterly co-founder and experimental art pioneer Huang Hua-cheng. As none of Huang’s video works have survived, the video documentation of the 1994 seminar “Theatre Quarterly and I,” in which Huang played his 1967 film Experiment 002 in the original 8mm format, provides a glimpse of his own work, whereas The Prophet is a video remake of Huang’s first experimental theater piece.

Law Kar, Hong Kong/Taiwan, 1969, 16mm transferred to video, 19 min.
US premiere

The Milky Way
Xi Xi, Taiwan, 1968, 16mm transferred to video, 2 min.
US premiere

T’ai Chi Ch’uan
Tom Davenport, 1969, 16mm transferred to video, 10 min.
US premiere

Experiment 002
Huang Hua-cheng, Taiwan, 1994, 39 min.
US premiere

The Prophet
Su Yu-hsien, Taiwan, 2016, 20 min., Chinese w/ English subtitles
US premiere

This series has been curated by the Taiwan International Documentary Festival, with support from the Taiwan Film Institute, and is presented in collaboration with the Taipei Cultural Center in New York.

【11th TIDF】台灣切片|想像式前衛:1960s 的電影實驗預告 Imagining the Avant-garde: Film Experiments of the 1960s Trailer