Sporting a gown as stunning as a painting, a big white rose atop her head, and a pair of twenty-centimeter high heels, Madame Bilan de Linphel takes to the stage and sings in a husky voice to a dimly-lit bar. Tears mixed with black mascara drip from the corners of her eyes as she belts songs from 1940s diva Bai Guang to Bai School Beijing folk storyteller Yan Qiuxia. She accepts generous tips of hecklers and admirers, while her contempt for the arrogant women sitting beneath the stage remains unmasked. She stands somewhere between a longing to submerge herself into the warmth of the songs of yesterday and a wild exorcism performed through dance. Amidst the madness the stage belongs to her—the gorgeous, dignified, acrimonious, cowardly, malicious, self-interested, bashful, unfortunate, amorous, matriarchal and bullheaded Madame Bilan de Linphel!
Tailor is a fast talker. He often goes to the city's gay venues – the parks and bathhouses– in search of stories, for a chance encounter, to flirt, to make love, and to eat. He says he was born to love men. In his eyes, his parents are unfortunate and his childhood was dull and lacked a sense of security. After growing up, Tailor funded his journey to Guangzhou on the meager income he earned making and repairing clothes. He traveled to the city to realize his dream of becoming a highly sought-after "prostitute". Indeed, some of the men he met, whether it was in Beijing or Guangzhou, have left their mark upon him. Back then he was still young. A lapse of judgment left him infected with syphilis and in his despair he began chanting the Heart Sutra. Day after day, through repetitive chanting he managed to forget the scripture and enter an intense meditative state where he found a sense of security.
The documentary technique of Madame is an exercise in minimalism, using the bare documentary style. Besides live performance footage, the film consists of unedited interviews, offering an insight into the complexity of Bilan de Linphel’s reality. The use of black and white adds to the minimalism, eliminating the ambiguity of color and leaving us in a monochrome world. In this way, the text and subject matter are tailor-made mirror images of each other.
Madame Fan Qihui has two identities: the talkative tailor and the dissolute Bilan de Linphel. With a pop-infused flavor, Madame Bilan de Linphel-cum-Tailor laments the seemingly incongruous facets of her identity. In the darkness of the stage, the mournful Bilan de Linphel sings the sad story of the tailor’s life.
New Works, Star Gallery, Beijing, China
The 6th China Independent Film Festival, RCM Art Museum, Nanjing, China
Research Institute, Kunming, China
The 5th Beijing Queer Film Festival, Beijing, China
Yunnan Multi Culture Visual Festival, Kunming, China
Abundant experience in the "school of life" has given Qiu Jiongjiong's works a depth that is unusual for artists of his age. Some of his most favored subjects include portraits and, oddly, cured meats. In his portraits, we see the faintly discernable shape of a jocular face peering out from a layered and mottled canvas. He has completely abandoned average portraiture techniques in favor of exaggerated deformations and obscure brush strokes that blur the lines between the subject and the viewer, playing with this tension to draw the viewer in. The literary influences in his paintings are obvious; Qiu Jiongjiong often draws elements from classic literature, for example Camille, Peony Pavilion, and The Light that Won't Harm Glass (which itself is inspired by the New Testament).
Since his youth, Qiu Jiongjiong has had a passion for film making. In 2007 he complete d his first film, Moon Palace, a 100-minute film documenting his father's life. In this experiment with black and white film, Qiu Jiongjiong's unique narrative style began to reveal itself, but more importantly, a lifetime of conflict with his father had finally come to an end. Family also became the subject matter of his second film in which he used emotive camera angles to follow his grandfather's opera career, as the film traces his lineage viewers can laugh along with him as they search for life's answers in art.
In a flashing trance, Qiu Jiongjiong creates one mysteriously colored context after another. His 2008 series of works, The Cruelty of Youth, is a reflection on the twinkling memories of youth. Captivating and cathartic, the film envelops the audience in the sweet memory ofyouth.
Qiu Jiongjiong was born in 1977 in Sichuan, China. He currently lives and works in Beijing.
Tailor is a fast talker. He advocates money and sex. As full of life as always, he lives in the midst of desire and desperation. A chatty man in day-to-day life, upon the stage Tailor is Madame Bilan de Linphel.
Best Top 10 for Madame at the 7th China Independent Film Festival, RCM Art Museum, Nanjing, China
The 4th Chongqing Independent Film and Video Festival, Chongqing, China
The 7th China Independent Film Festival, RCM Art Museum, Nanjing, China
The 5th Beijing Independent Film Festival, Songzhuang, Beijing, China
DOChina Traveling Documentary Exhibition,
Organhaus Art Space,Chongqing, China
Emerging Award at the 1st ifeng Festival,
Secret love, Museum of Far Eastern Antiquities, Stockholm, Sweden
Lust and Love of the Young and Liberated, 798 Space, Beijing, China
Guyu: Yunnan Multi Culture Visual Festival, Dali, China
Mirror and Shadow, National Gallery of Indonesia, Jakarta, Indonesia
Secret love, National Museums of Wolrd Culture, Gothenburg, Sweden
Qiu Jiongjiong's experiences growing up have made him something of an eccentric in the art community: he began painting at age two and at age three he began performing local opera (his grandfather was a famous Sichuanese Opera performer). He established his dream of being an artist when he was young, then at 18 years old he left school to devote himself to his art.