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Exhibition & Events


Zhao Dayong - Shadow Days: Independent film from China

Visual Research Centre, lower level of Dundee Contemporary Arts

Exhibition: Monday 15 - Saturday 27 May 2017

Open: Monday to Saturday, 12 - 4pm

Cooper Gallery presents Shadow Days: Independent film from China, a selection of films by award winning Chinese independent filmmaker Zhao Dayong at Centrespace. Curated by Cooper Gallery, this is the UK debut of Zhao Dayoung and will feature the internationally celebrated works The High Life (2010), Shadow Days (2013), Ghost Town (2008) and Street Life (2006). This presentation of documentary and feature films is part of the city wide cultural festival, Ignite Dundee 2017. 

Zhao Dayong is one of most distinctive voices in Chinese independent film today. Much of Zhao Dayong's film has explored themes of existential anxiety and spiritual bankruptcy in the face of a China that is rapidly transforming - in which history, culture, meaning, and even love and family, are often destroyed in the pursuit of mirages of prosperity. Visually, Zhao's works combine a strong artistic sensibility with an eye for the raw, revealing and poetic details.


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Zhao Dayong is one of most distinctive voices in Chinese independent film today. Zhao graduated from China’s Lu Xun Art Academy in 1992 and began exploring the medium of digital video in 2002. His first documentary film, Street Life, premiered at Austria’s Viennale in October 2006. Zhao’s second documentary film, Ghost Town, premiered at the New York Film Festival in 2009. His first fiction feature, The High Life, premiered at the Hong Kong International Film Festival in 2010, winning both the FIPRESCI Award and the Silver Digital Award. The High Life made its European premiere in the main competition at the Mannheim-Heidelberg International Film Festival in November 2010, where it won both the Werner Fassbinder Prize and the FIPRESCI Jury Prize. Zhao's second fiction feature, Shadow Days, premiered at the Berlinale in 2013, and was theatrically released in France in 2016. In June 2015 Zhao performed a cameo appearance in artist Edgar Schmitz’ exhibition, Surplus Cameo Decor: Sindanao 2, in Phase One of Cooper Gallery’s on-going programme, CURRENT: Contemporary Art from Scotland, Shanghai Himalayas Museum. 

All images courtesy Zhao Dayong


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Open Monday - Saturday, 12-4pm 

Centrespace in the Visual Research Centre DJCAD

lower floor Dundee Contemporary Arts, 152 Nethergate, Dundee. 

Shadow Days


Ghost Town


Street Life

ZhaoDayong - StreetLife

High Life

High Life