Next week is going to be a busy week at the University with the Leicester Literary Festival returning for another installment; with lots of the events being held on campus, as well as different locations around the city. I seriously suggest checking it out if you can…I mean Anne Robinson is going to be there, so there’s some strong incentive! However, the purpose of this blog is not to harp upon about the literary festival, rather an event taking place in the same week; Ou Ning, the activist artist, curator and filmmaker is doing at talk at the university.
The event will take place on Thursday the 16th of November, in the Museum Studies Building, starting at 7pm. I’ll leave a link here for you to read a bit more, and potentially book a place on the talk if you’re interested (Oh, and it’s FREE):
Ou Ning is visiting as part of a discussion about the Bishan Project; a project led in China between 2010 and 2016 essentially wishing to highlight the problems faced by both urban and rural communities, particularly due to the large demographic shifts of citizens from rural to urban areas. This still is a particularly pressing issue in China (Ning’s home-country). Ning himself is an active participant in helping such projects, wishing to express his feelings on these issues, however some of the most interesting work, in my opinion, comes from his two documentary films: San Yuan Li (2003) and Meishi Street (2006). These films both depict the issues of rapid urbanization, in different ways. Ning’s first film, San Yuan Li, focuses on the agricultural communities now struggling to work in new urban conditions, such as the need to use roofing as an effective way to rear chickens. The other, Meishi Street, documents the protest from residents as their street is threatened by planned destruction, in the lead up to the Bejing Olympics.
Although I was aware of Ou Ning as a documentary maker, I did not know just what an important cause Ning was, and still is fighting for. To me, the Bishan Project was not just an art project, rather a campaign for change, demonstrated in an accessible medium for all ages. It should be an interesting and insightful night for all who attend, so if you are available, why not grab a ticket and head down?
Take Care Everyone, I’ll Speak to You All Soon!