Starting from the seminal Ming dynasty text A Journey to the West and its search for clarity and understanding, misty clouds scattered colours II is the second reincarnation of a moving image project focusing on films by artists based in Asia and its diaspora. Presented as a collaborative three-day screening and panel project in a small cinema, which is a converted magistrates court in the heart of Liverpool, the changed collaboration with Spazio Ridotto and Zuecca Projects is a multi-channel exhibition in San Marco – Venice, with a selection of the originally-programmed films that sequentially focus on self/space/nation. The aim is to scatter notions of ‘otherness’ and the clichéd East to West rhetoric.
misty clouds scattered colours is a phrase from the first chapter of the dynasty text and it describes the presence of an initial cave, which the protagonist Sun Wukong steps into as he begins his pilgrimage of consciousness. Realising that the breaking down of the feeling of otherness starts by looking at the Self. The primary stage of the exhibition features Wong Ping (Hong Kong), who creates vivid animations that combine crass and colourful to create a discourse around repressed sexuality, personal sentiments and political limitations. Zheng Bo (China) is specialised in socially and ecologically engaged art, investigating the past and imagining the future from the perspectives of marginalised communities and marginalised plants.
Investigating our surroundings, the second part of the exhibition concentrates on space and brings together works by Tromarama (Indonesia), João Vasco Paiva (Portugal/Hong Kong) and Suki Chan (Hong Kong/United Kingdom). Through humour, deconstruction, psychology and politics, the works collectively address our environment, what makes up our surroundings. From a pluralistic standpoint, the works dip between the objects we use daily, the places we valuate, physical experiences of space, and different perspectives of the frameworks that govern us, encouraging a multiplicity of viewpoints, and a heightened harmony to the place.
The project is a wider focus on nation, how we perceive this concept in the context of time and space, amidst shifting political climates, in an age of displacement, in light of a constructed cumulative historical canon. Bringing together films by Sun Xun (China), Samson Young (Hong Kong) and Ho Tzu Nyen (Singapore), the programme deepens the global concerns that impact lives regardless of continents or countries. Researching who and what defines us and how, the sentiment of empathy is encouraged and points of contact are made between one context and one citizen, and another.
Misty Clouds was originally presented by Edouard Malingue Gallery at Liverpool Community Cinema, in collaboration with institutions across the North West: CFCCA (Manchester), Open Eye Gallery (Liverpool), FACT (Liverpool), Liverpool John Moores University (Liverpool), ART LABS (Liverpool) and Double Negative.