The theme this month is ‘China through the looking glass’, an evening of performances, environments and live music exploring the myths and stereotypes of Chinese culture. The event is linked to the Sinopticon project and coincides with the stunning Imperial Chinese robes exhibition.
Included are films by Suki Chan and Erika Tan, light installations by Audio Architecture and SubJam, a Chinese cymbals-based soundpiece by DJ Lukasz, national flag cheongsam dresses and subverted chess sets by WESSIELING, Gayle Chong Kwan’s Manipulated Memory Tasting Booth, Stephanie Douet’s remote-controlled giant ceramic figurine, the Guerilla Dance Project, a performance piece by Ed Pien and a mythical opium den by Karen Tam.
In the midst of this dazzling phantasmagoria I will be taking visitors on a short stroll through the history of chinoiserie, starting at 19:30 and 20:15. I will be walking through the British Galleries and talking about the wonderful examples of Chinese-inspired design on show there, and how chinoiserie changed from being a ‘progressive’ style to being a ‘nostalgic’ one.