Swab House

Swab House by Fundació Swab Barcelona


Swab Barcelona opens its artists' residence Swab House with Chinese filmmakers Ju Anqi, Liu Hao and Yu Depeng which, in the frame of "Cross-Boundaries" program, will do in Barcelona their first video art work. 

The screening rooms will be 3 industrial containers exposed in the Font Magica square, in front of the Italian Pavilion (Swab Barcelona Fair), as well as in Centre d'Arts Santa Monica.



Swab House is an initiative of Fundació Swab Barcelona which has the aim to encourage and promote emerging artists of the international contemporary panorama while making them partakers of our city's artistic scene. Developed in collaboration with creation centers and residences of Barcelona, the invited artists will produce, during the month prior to the fair and under the theme and the technique proposed, artworks that will be exhibited in its own space at Swab.

During the month prior to the fair it will be possible to follow the experience of the Swab House resident artists' through the Swab Journal. Besides there will be a documentary that will be part of the exhibition that will developed in parallel in the Arts Santa Monica.

For this first edition the selected artists are Liu Hao, Ju Anqi and Yu Depeng through the program Cross-Boundaries curated by Susana Sanz. All three are recognized independent filmmakers who, during his one month stay in Barcelona, will create his first work of video art in the framework of a project that discusse about the limits between this medium and the auteur cinema. They will stay in Jiwar Barcelona residence, and the works will be done in collaboration with the director of photography Aleix Fernandez and, in one of them, the actor Jan Cornet.

Swab House explores new exhibition formats like, on this occasion, containers converted into screening rooms, a kind, of industrial black box. The containers also symbolyze the exchange between China and Barcelona, normally of goods, in this occasion intellectual. In each container one of the works will be projected thanks to the collaboration of the photography brand LumixG of Panasonic, which have provided the lenses and cameras with which the works have been recorded.


Image: "Ziyou". Yu Depeng


Crossboundaries: Moving Images from China

When we talk about independent Chinese cinema, we tend to think in productions with limited budget or that are distributed in alternative channels compared to the commercial and official cinema. However, the concept "independent" has many implications in Chinese and is very complicated to define. Directors as the exiled Ying Liang illustrate the traditional trend  of the independent Chinese film that had its Golden Age  with the Foundation of Li Xianting in Songzhuang (Beijing). Today, this faction of the independent film, whose heads are certain professors from the Beijing Film Academy, has become mainstream; with its own production and distribution system, they have become as exclusionary as the official cinema, which they much criticized in their origins.

Yu Depeng and Ju Anqi represent a trend of young and fresh creators who have fleed from that elite of Chinese independent cinema in that space in-between which is experimental film, auteur documentary and video art. Their movies have entered in the museums of contemporary art  with "Chinese features ". On the other hand, Liu Hao is a director that, despite its success in large international festivals, is not accepted by the elite of the independent Chinese cinema and neither the contemporary art, self-developing in solitude the production and distribution of his films.

Inspired by the creative fleed towards video art of famous filmmakers as Tsai Ming-Liang, Apitchapong Weerasethakul or Gu Changwei; the program Crossboundaries: Moving Images from China invite Ju Anqi, Yu Depeng and Liu Hao to cross all the borders that limit their artistic expression. From their education as filmmakers, they will investigate the boundaries between auteur cinema and video art, while they homage their admired Abbas Kirostami, Takeshi Kitano and Pedro Almodovar, to imagine and discover different Barcelonas.






Crossboundaries - Swab program. Italian Pavillion September 29 to octubre 2. (Font Màgica Square)

Exhibition Arts Santa Mònica September 29 to October 2.

Premiere: Arts Santa Mònica September 28 at 19h (Only with invitation)







With the collaboration of:




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