“History doesn’t repeat itself, but it does rhyme.”
— Mark Twain

The Way We Were: A Photographic Journey Back to 1970s and 80s Hong Kong – Hong Kong – 3-18 November 2018

Posted: November 1st, 2018 | No Comments »

 

The Way We Were: A Photographic Journey Back to 1970s and 80s Hong Kong

 

Entitled The Way We Were, this exhibition features photos of nostalgic street scenes steeped in colonial and local culture, city panoramas and images of life on the sea. The show is a documentation of, and flashback to, Hong Kong in the 1970s and 1980s, expressing a city that abounds in colour, diversity and the contagious 工合 (gung1 hap6) attitude.

These images are exhibited alongside Keith Macgregor’s passion project called Neon Fantasies. In this series, Macgregor imagines what Hong Kong could have looked like if its neon signs weren’t removed or eclipsed by LED signage. Photographed street scenes are digitally collaged with images of the city’s most iconic neon signs—most of them long gone—creating eye-catching images that are simultaneously historical and futuristic.

Macgregor, who is now over 70 years old and based in London, still frequently returns to the city he called home for over three decades to capture its ever-changing cityscape.

Where: usagi Hong Kong – Shop B, G/F, Wah Shin House, 6-10 Shin Hing Street – Central

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Literary Shanghai – Special Edition – Shanghai in Singapore

Posted: October 30th, 2018 | No Comments »

The journal Literary Shanghai has produced a special edition for the Singapore Writers Festival this November – Shanghai in Singapore – with a bunch of original contributions (including from me) and new translations….it’ll be everywhere at the festival and available in various bookshops in Singapore and China as well as via Literary Shanghai…

 

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Ida Hurst – Typist in China, 1941

Posted: October 30th, 2018 | No Comments »

Ida Hurst was apparently an intrepid traveller between the wars and also a typist! I would very much like to read her book from 1941, Typist in China, but I’m a bit stuck finding a copy – anyone got one?

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Peonies and Ponies Launch ad – Horizon 1941

Posted: October 27th, 2018 | No Comments »

The first Chatto and Windus ads to appear for Harold Acton’s classic comic novel of the Peking ex-pat scene that is yet to be bettered or even challenged…in Cyril Connolly’s Horizon April 1941 issue…

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Things Americans Were Told About China in the 1920s

Posted: October 26th, 2018 | No Comments »

from the American newspapers in 1921….

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Hong Kong International Literary Festival Opening Night – 2/11/18 – JC Cube, Tai Kwun

Posted: October 25th, 2018 | No Comments »

The HKILF opening night is rapidly approaching and it’s in a fantastic new venue, the JC Cube (below) at the new Tai Kwun arts centre on Hollywood Road (and its free)…7-8pm, 2/11/18 – click here

Join us for a dynamic, eclectic and entertaining evening as we celebrate the start of Hong Kong’s 18th International Literary Festival!

Drawing together local and international literary talent, we present a night of storytelling inspired by the theme of journeys. Festival participants Geoff Dyer, Paul French, Nashua Gallagher, Emmy the Great and Jenny Zhang will share their tales of here, there and what lies in between.

 

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One More Midnight in Peking Walking Tour Before it Gets a Bit too Chilly Up There in Beijing – 27/10/18

Posted: October 24th, 2018 | No Comments »

This Saturday, October 27th, there is one more official Penguin China & Bespoke Beijing Midnight in Peking Walking Tour before its gets a bit chilly in Beijing to go our walking for a few hours…

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Together in one Box – the Von Sternebrg-Dietrich Collection

Posted: October 23rd, 2018 | No Comments »

Christmas is coming…and here’s what I think is a perfect gift…all the Von Sternberg/Dietrich flicks in one set from Criterion (here)

So here’s a couple of China Rhyming accompanying articles

On Shanghai ExpressHarry Hervey’s original treatment for the movie

On Morocco – Amy Jolly’s Chinese Doll

Tasked by studio executives with finding the next great screen siren, visionary Hollywood director Josef von Sternberg joined forces with rising German actor Marlene Dietrich, kicking off what would become one of the most legendary partnerships in cinema history. Over the course of six films produced by Paramount in the 1930s, the pair refined their shared fantasy of pleasure, beauty, and excess. Dietrich’s coolly transgressive mystique was a perfect match for the provocative roles von Sternberg cast her in—including a sultry chanteuse, a cunning spy, and the hedonistic Catherine the Great—and the filmmaker captured her allure with chiaroscuro lighting and opulent design, conjuring fever-dream visions of exotic settings from Morocco to Shanghai. Suffused with frank sexuality and worldly irony, these deliriously entertaining masterpieces are landmarks of cinematic artifice.

Special Features

  • New 2K or 4K digital restorations of all six films, with uncompressed monaural soundtracks on the Blu-rays
  • New interviews with film scholars Janet Bergstrom and Homay King; director Josef von Sternberg’s son, Nicholas; Deutsche Kinemathek curator Silke Ronneburg; and costume designer and historian Deborah Nadoolman Landis
  • New documentary about actor Marlene Dietrich’s German origins, featuring film scholars Gerd Gemünden and Noah Isenberg
  • New documentary on Dietrich’s status as a feminist icon, featuring film scholars Mary Desjardins, Amy Lawrence, and Patricia White
  • The Legionnaire and the Lady, a 1936 Lux Radio Theatre adaptation of Morocco, featuring Dietrich and actor Clark Gable
  • New video essay by critics Cristina Álvarez López and Adrian Martin
  • The Fashion Side of Hollywood, a 1935 publicity short featuring Dietrich and costume designer Travis Banton
  • Television interview with Dietrich from 1971
  • PLUS: A book featuring essays by critics Imogen Sara Smith, Gary Giddins, and Farran Smith Nehme

 

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