Julien's four-year research led to a plethora of collaborations with many of China's leading artists. The film features performances by Maggie Cheung, calligraphy by Gong Fagen, lush cinematography by Zhao Xiaoshi, and most importantly a narrative from poet Wang Ping, whose poem Small Boats was commissioned by Julien to form a previous installation and is recited in this piece. The film is made even more powerful through the soundtrack by pioneer English musician/producer Jah Wobble, whose histories in dub, and working with the Chinese Dub Orchestra provide another transient, cultural reference point.
There is a beautiful allegiance between these works and Julien's other more "traditional" films, where the exploration of how narratives unfold, what is truth and what is simulated blur against and between the images that are projected for interpretation
ICA – Institute of Contemporary Art
100 Northern Avenue, Boston
Through 4 March 2012