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Xie yuzhong
Jigongshan ART MUSEUM CHINA 2019

5min 49sec

sound by Olivier Hölzl

Xie Yuzhong, our versatile and helpful assistant, seamlessly took on various tasks for us, from painting and fixing walls to hanging our artworks. Despite our language barrier, our communication relied on smiles, hand signals, and occasional grunts, creating a simple and easy-going relationship. Observing his meticulous work brought me inner peace. One day, during a laid-back afternoon, we shared Chinese hard liquor, revealing the charismatic and humorous side of Xie Yuzhong. Inspired by his personality, I envisioned creating a video of him dancing and balancing a bamboo stick on his head. With no verbal communication, I showed him my camera, pointed, and danced while balancing a bamboo stick on my head. He found it amusing, and with a thumbs-up exchange, our non-verbal agreement was sealed. The video shoot, guided by hand signals, went smoothly, showcasing his surprising talent for balancing the bamboo stick. In post-production, I playfully controlled his movements like a computer game, incorporating typical game sounds and electronic music samples. The repetitive sounds added a threatening undertone. Shot in November 2019, just a two-hour drive from Wuhan, the balancing act took on an unforeseen significance in hindsight, seemingly foreshadowing the events of 2020.

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