Premiere Screening of “FACE THE EARTH” by Ming-Chuan Huang Documentary on artist Chin Chih Yang

I'm looking forward to seeing this film. I had the great pleasure of collaborating on some of the US-based shooting. Congratulations to Chin Chih and Ming on the film's premiere!



Nov 18 2017

Renowned Taiwanese filmmaker Ming-Chuan Huang partners with Taiwanese American performance artist Chin Chih Yang to explore the artist’s lifelong focus on the culture of waste. FACE THE EARTH puts viewers right next to Yang as 30,000 aluminum cans are dumped on his head to call our attention to the vast amount of waste each of us creates – the average person uses and discards 30,000 cans in their lifetime! Sit alongside Chin Chih and passersby in New York City’s storied Union Square, on a giant block of ice and ponder the possibility that the polar ice cap will be gone by 2050. Watch the public participate with the artist to help him create his Giant Can Family at the Contemporary Art Museum of Taipei. Learn how he makes sturdy whole cloth out of discarded potato chip bags and gain insight into how each of us can FACE THE EARTH and contribute to her resuscitation.

This 85-minute documentary film intersperses scenes of the artist at work with in-depth interviews with Tom Finkelpearl, The Commissioner of Cultural Affairs of the City of New York; Dr. Martha Wilson, Founding Director of Franklin Furnace Archive; Michael L. Royce, Executive Director of the New York Foundation for the Arts, Robert C. Morgan, Ph.D. – Artist/Art Critic, Steve Cannon – A Gathering of the Tribes, Nicolás Dumit Estévez Raful – artist, Jeffrey Grunthaner – writer, James Leonard – Artist, John Downing Bonafede – Artist, John Ahearn – Artist, Manfred Kirchheimer – film maker / professor of film at SVA, Heidi Jain – photography teacher  and others.  Directed and Produced by Huang Mingchuan, and produced by Formosa Filmedia Company, FACE THE EARTH includes footage by Annie Berman, Wang Yi Chang, Ray Huang, Liu Kuanting, Wang Shau-gung, Nick McGovern, Sen-I Yu, Doll Chao, Johanna Naukkarinen, Jing Wang, Susan L Yung and others. Photography by Rodrigo Salazar, John Bonafede, John Ahearn, Justen Ladda, Tom Otterness, Julie Lemberger and others.

Screening is followed by Q&A with the artist and light refreshments.

Admission is free, but since seating is limited we request that you RSVP HERE.  

FACE THE EARTH is sponsored by the Ministry of Cultural Affairs of Taiwan, and copyrighted 2017 by Ming-Chuan Huang and Chin Chih Yang

About Chin Chih Yang
Multidisciplinary artist Chin Chih Yang was born in Taiwan, and has resided for many years in New York City. He holds degrees from Pratt Institute and Parsons School of Design. Among other honors, he has been awarded grants by The New York State Council on the Arts, the New York Foundation for the Arts, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, Franklin Furnace Archive, MacDowell Colony and more. Yang’s interests in ecology and constructed environments have resulted in interactive performances and installations in the United States, Poland, Finland, Austria, Germany, Taiwan, Singapore and Hong Kong. He has exhibited/performed at Rockefeller Center, the United Nations, Union Square Park, The Queens Museum, the Godwin-Ternbach Museum, Exit Art, Flux Factory and in 2016 the Museum of Contemporary Art, Taipei hosted a major retrospective. All told, Yang strives to lead audiences to a more direct awareness of the effects of contemporary technology and engender compassion for all humanity.

About Ming-Chuan Huan
Born in Chiayi, Taiwan in 1955, Huang Ming-Chuan lives now in Taipei. Graduating from the Department of Law of National Taiwan University, he left Taiwan to study Lithographic Printmaking in Art Students League of New York and Fine Arts and Photography at Art Center College of Design in Los Angeles. Huan’s feature film THE MAN FROM ISLAND WEST claimed an Excellent Cinematography Award at Hawaii international Film Festival and a Silver Screen Award at Singapore international Film Festival in 1990. In 1998 his FLAT TYRE was awarded Best film in the non-commercial category at Taipei Film Festival and Jury Award at the Golden Horse Festival, Taiwan. As a documentary director, Huang has made numerous documentaries on art subjects and won the first Taishin Arts Award’s Visual Arts Prize in 2003. He has served as a board member of Taiwan’s National Culture and Arts Foundation (2000-03), National Film Archive Foundation (2002-05), Public Television System Foundation (2005) and CTV (2008-present). Huang was chairman of international jury of Taishin Arts Award’s Visual Arts Prize (2005), and feature length competition juror of Taiwan International Documentary Festival (2008). He was elected as Chairman of the National Culture and Arts Foundation in early 2008. Ming-Chuan has been the artistic director of the Chiayi City International Art Doc Film Festival since 2014.

For more information please contact Harley Spiller, 917-553-4831

Feature Image: Taiwanese artist Chin Chih Yang performance of “Kill Me or Change”, Queens Museum of Art, 2012

A Groundbreaking New Exhibition of Tech Art, Maker Workshops and Electronic Music Performances Stronger Together, from Creative Tech Week, is coming in May

Artists featured in the exhibition include Richard Jochum from Art and Education, Teachers College at Columbia University; Daniel Tempkin, Joe Diebes, Ed Bear, Margaret Schedel and Melissa F. Clark, Harvestworks Digital Media Arts Center; Annie Berman, Andrew Demirjian, Ricardo Miranda and Rachel Stevens from Integrated Media Arts at Hunter College CUNY;

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[NEW YORK, NY—MARCH 2017] – Second Life was launched in 2003 as a sandbox-style game, open to users willing to create their own experience within the confines of its digital landscape. There was no objective, users were responsible for their experience. It was not long before the game developed into a thriving world inhabited by thousands of users. However, by the late 2000s, the online world of Second Life collapsed, just as the global economic downturn began to take hold. Using screen capture software, filmmaker Annie Berman sends her own avatar into this virtual world to investigate the remnants of this once thriving community.

In Greek mythology, Utopia means ‘no place.’ Thomas More invented the word to name his invented island—a place (a “no place”) that represented an idealized notion of a perfect society. For thousands of users or ‘residents’ as they were called, Second Life became a kind of search for More’s concept of utopia, albeit in a non-traditional setting reflecting our modern society and the influence of technology.

The film is a first-person depiction of a 3D world rendered in 2D, and the remains, ruins, that do not decay and thus speak to a paradise lost: speculative real estate, realtors' offices, wide open spaces with 'for sale' signs, Harvard University’s virtual ‘sandbox’, and an art gallery on its last days. Utopia 1.0: Post-Neo-Futurist-Capitalism in 3D! explores our very notion of progress and the role it plays in our ability to imagine utopia, to imagine a better world. In the case of Second Life, given the invitation to come build anything imaginable, Berman asks, what is it that we chose to create?

“I screen Annie Berman's Utopia 1.0 as part of my advanced new media studio class for undergraduates called 'Spaceship Earth.' The class addresses creative projects in imaging the scale of the planet from the urban to the galactic, and the often hybrid material and virtual forms they take. Utopia 1.0 sparks rich discussions about embodiment and spatial navigation in virtual worlds, as well as the social constructs of class, capitalism, race and inequality that accompany us into fabricated spaces. The video surfaces with humor those deep anxieties of the performance of the self online within asymmetrical power dynamics within which young people struggle to navigate today,” says Caitlin Berrigan, professor of emerging media, NYU Tisch Photography & Imaging.

TRAILER UTOPIA 1.0: Post-Neo-Futurist-Capitalism in 3D! from Fish in the Hand Productions

This is the sixth film by New York-based filmmaker Annie Berman and a follow-up to her 2013 film Street Views, which also explored similar themes of the digital spaces we create and inhabit. Since its debut, Utopia 1.0: Post-Neo-Futurist-Capitalism in 3D! has been screened in over a dozen film festivals, as well as presented at several academic conferences, including: Codes and Modes, Reframing VR; I-Docs; the CongRegation Conference; and Impakt Festival Utrecht.

As an academic resource, the film offers [students, academics, librarians] a multidisciplinary critique of our modern notions of utopia. Key areas of interest include the intersection of film, media, and technology; as well as economic, philosophical, and political implications which coincide with the decline of Second Life. “Utopia 1.0 is at once thought-provoking, emotionally riveting, and envelope-pushing in its exploration of the intersection of contemporary culture and technology,” says Caveh Zahedi.

About The Filmmaker: Annie Berman
Annie Berman is a media artist living and working in New York City. Named one of Independent Magazine’s 10 Filmmakers to Watch in 2016, her films, videos, performances, and installations have shown internationally in galleries, festivals, universities, and conferences, including the MoMA Documentary Fortnight, Rooftop Films, Galerie Patrick Ebensperger Berlin, Kassel Hauptbahnhof, and the Rome Independent Film Festival where she was awarded the Best Experimental Film Prize. Her work has received support from the Puffin Foundation, Wave Farm, the Leonard Bernstein Festival of the Arts, the Center for Independent Documentary, Signal Culture, The Rockefeller Brothers Fund, and UnionDocs. She holds an MFA in Integrated Media Art from Hunter College.