The Fifteenth Croisements Festival is Here

By That's Beijing, June 3, 2021

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After a year away due to COVID-19, the Croisements Festival returns more creative, ambitious and festive than ever – and in a determined mood to celebrate its fifteenth edition. 

This year’s diverse program brings together the general public, artists and partners to celebrate the ‘crossroads’ between France and China in artistic disciplines including the visual arts, music, theater, cinema, dance, fashion and literature.

Programs are being staged in 14 cities across China from April 21 to July 31, 2021.

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TRACE IMPRESSIONS: Marcos Ávila Forer 

Saturday May 8, 2021 – Sunday May 30, 2021

Three Shadows Photography Art Centre
155A Caochangdi Chaoyang Qu

Monday June 7, 2021 to Thursday September 30, 2021 

Institut français in Bejing

Guangcai International Mansion, 18 Gongti Xilu Chaoyang Qu

In Marcos Avila Forero’s creative process, the artwork itself does not only exist in the “trace” that he decides to exhibit – be that a film, a photograph or a sculpture. Fieldwork with communities and moments of identification, observation and exchange are, for the artist, along with his archival research, a unifying and documentary prerequisite to any project: “My work exists above all where I do it.”

Forero’s first monographic exhibition in China includes several iconic pieces from his career, supplemented by critical reflections on the world derived from clues and fragments addressing themes of memory, resistance and exile. 

This selection of films and photographs also acts as a sketchbook or investigative record whose lifeblood is exchange, transmission and collaboration. The documentary or conceptual portraits and landscapes also give a behind-the-scenes impression of his travels. Above all, they are a tool for grasping the contexts that the artist cites as a key part of his research: the Colombian countryside, migrant camps, memories of tradition and the quest for elsewhere.

About Marcos Ávila Forero

Marcos Ávila Forero was born in 1983. He graduated from the Paris School of Fine Arts in 2010 with the Congratulations of the Jury. In 2011, he was awarded the Multimedia Prize for Fine Arts Foundations, then the Palais de Tokyo Discovery Prize in 2013 and the Loop Awards prize in 2014. His work Atratowas shown at the 57th Venice Biennale. In 2019, he won the 21st Ricard Foundation Prize and in 2020, his work entered the collections of the Center Pompidou in Paris.

About Three Shadows

The Three Shadows Photography Art Center was designed in 2007 by photographers Ron gRong and Inri as a space for the research, production and exhibition of contemporary Chinese and international photographic works. The 4,600 meters-sqaured complex was designed by renowned artist and architect Ai Weiwei.

ALBERTO GIACOMETTI: Selection of works from the Louis Vuitton Foundation

Wednesday April 7, 2021 – September 26, 2021

Espace Louis Vuitton
South West Zone, China World Mall, 1 Jianguomen Dajie, Chaoyang district Chaoyang Qu

The Espace Louis Vuitton Beijing presents an exhibition of works by the famous painter and sculptor Alberto Giacometti. Despite the almost immediate recognition of his art, Giacometti quickly turned away from the surreal objects that made him famous to focus on live models. 

His work draws on his knowledge of prehistoric, Egyptian, Sumerian and Archaic Greek art, combining the everyday experience and timeless forms of everyday and ancient models. From 1935, live models became the obsessive subject of his work. During this same period, he developed an interest in scale ratios and the way that figures occupy and animate the space around them. In the 1950s, his bodies became increasingly thin, pared back to the basic lines of their precarious existence.

This new exhibition presents eight of Giacometti’s iconic sculptures: Head on a Rod (1947), Three Men Walking (1948), Man Who Capsizes (1950), Woman of Venice III (1956), Tall Woman II (1960)) and Heads of a Man (Lotar I), (Lotar II) and (Lotar III) (1964-65). These are all considered key masterpieces and exemplars of the virtuosity of this iconic artist.

About the Louis Vuitton Foundation

The Louis Vuitton Foundation deals exclusively with contemporary art, artists and twentieth-century works that have nourished and inspired contemporary creation. Its public role can be seen in exhibitions in Paris and abroad as the part of its Hors-les-murs programme. 

The building itself was designed by the American-Canadian architect Frank Gehry. A seminal twenty-firstcentury architectural statement, it has welcomed more than six million visitors at the gates of the Bois de Boulogne in Paris since 2014. Inaugurated in 2017, the Espace Louis Vuitton Beijing is one the six Espaces Hors-les-murs venues in the world. Located in Beijing's CBD, its exhibition program features iconic works from the Louis Vuitton Foundation collection.

About Alberto Giacometti

Born in Switzerland in 1901, Alberto Giacometti was introduced to post-impressionist painting by his father at a young age. He studied fine arts in Geneva and then at the Académie de la Grande Chaumière in Paris, where his work as a sculptor brought him close to the post-cubist and surrealist movements. He exhibited his work alongside Jean Arp and Joan Miró. 

The year 1935 marked a turning point in his career, when he went back to working exclusively with live models, notably with portraits of his wife Annette. After the war, these large slender figures became a feature of his work. In 1956, he represented France at the Venice Biennale and won the Grand prix de la Sculpture at the 1962 Biennale. He died in Switzerland in 1966.

12 nuances de lumière

Saturday June 26, 2021, 10am – Sunday November 28, 2021, 5pm

Museum of Photography Xie Zilong

2 Lushan S Rd Yuelu Qu Changsha Shi

Twelve French and Chinese artists produce works of art using different forms of light (projections, flames, neon lights, reflections, rays, sun recordings, lamps, windows, panes, water, air, etc.) Each uses their specific medium to engage the light in dialogue. 

At a time when screens are everywhere, sucking in light and numbing our senses, the exhibition offers a poetic, sensitive reflection on the modern world: an abstract description that explores the spaces between light and vision.

How can we escape the screen? How can we wake up? The answer: through light.

The exhibition curated by Song Zhenxi features works by Liu Jiayu, Ying Xinxun, Gu Shicheng, Zeng Xi, Zhou Linwei, Jean-François Gavoty, Niek Van De Steeg, Éric Aupol, Anne Wauters, Bertrand Gadenne, Delphine Gigoux- Martin and the UFO Laboratory Collective.

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THE SUPERMARKET OF IMAGES - A Jeu de Paume exhibition

Friday May 28, 2021 – Sunday August 1, 2021

Red Brick Art Museum, Shunbai Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing Chaoyang Qu

The Supermarket of Images, designed by the Jeu de Paume, questions the economy of images by confronting the audience with their omnipresence in the modern world. The project's starting point is a text by Peter Szendy, one of the exhibition’s curators: “The Supermarket of the Visible: an Essay in 'Iconomie'”. The paper analyses the economic dimension of the life of images, their storage, the speed at which they circulate, the materials from which they are made, and their value.

This multidisciplinary exhibition uses a range of different media including photographs, videos, films, digital creations and multimedia installations to address topical subjects such as the omnipresence of internet giants, personal data protection, microworking and clickworkers, and cryptocurrency – these practices that comprise the modern world. 

About fifty artists from all over the world take an incisive, focussed look at these new issues through several works, some of which have been specially designed for the exhibition. Big names like Sophie Calle and Maurizio Cattelan interweave their stories with those of long-standing and emerging figures as part of a sweeping social and contemporary vision.

About the Jeu de Paume museum

The Jeu de Paumeis an iconic cultural institution at the Jardin des Tuileries in Paris. It is both art centre and a key location for the dissemination of twentieth and twenty-first century images (photography, cinema, video, installation, etc.) The Jeu de Paume produces or co-produces exhibitions, film cycles, colloquiums, seminars, educational activities and publications. Its exhibitions are shown around the world in collaboration, interaction and connection with other national and international institutions.

About the Red Brick Art Museum

Founded in 2014 by Yan Shijie and Cao Mei, the Red Brick Art Museum is a central institution of Beijing's contemporary art landscape. The museum has hosted exhibitions including Tatiana Trouvé, l’Éclat de l’Absence (The Sparkle of Absence), Laure Prouvot, Into All That Here (2015), Haute Tension (High Voltage) (2017), and Toi qui chemines, il est pas de chemin (Traveller, There is no Path) (2019).

About OCAT

Basedin Shanghai, OCAT is China's premier non-profit arts institution dedicated to new media and architecture. Under the direction of Zhang Peili, a pioneer of video art in China, it organizes exhibitions, conducts research, publishes works and develops collaborations with a large number of international institutions.

Kandinsky: the pioneer of abstract art

Saturday May 1, 2021 – Sunday September 5, 2021

West Bund Art Center

Xuhui Qu

China’s first monographic exhibition of Vassily Kandinsky is designed as an original retrospective. The Centre Pompidou in Paris holds the most exhaustive collection of the Russian painter's work thanks to donations and bequests from his widow, Nina Kandinsky.

Around a hundred paintings, drawings and engravings retrace the extraordinary journey of this key figure in the twentieth-century artworld. In particular, the steps that mark his journey from Moscow to Munich, Weimar Germany and Paris as a pioneer of abstract painting.

Kandinsky’s interest in the arts of the Far East is also seen in his personal collection of original works and documents. It is echoed in Angela Lampe’s curation of ancient Chinese bronzes on loan from the Shanghai Museum. 

A parallel series of lectures and film screenings will be held at the West Bund Museum.

HOMO SACER | Antoine d'Agata

Dates:

Saturday May 8, 2021 – Sunday September 26, 2021

Location:

Chengdu Contemporary Image Museum

Fuhe Photography Park, Jinfu Road Section, Middle Ring Road,
Jinniu District, Chengdu 

Tickets:

One entry: RMB60

2-person special offer: RMB90

Concessions: RMB30

Scan the QR code to reserve your entry

Chengdu Image Museum
889, Jinfu Road, Jinniu District, Chengdu Jinniu Qu Chengdu Shi

From day one of the COVID-19 lockdown in France, Antoine Agata roamed the streets of Paris with a thermal camera to record, in his own way, the viral outbreak that turned the city into a strange theatre. 

While people self-isolated, he tracked down the heat stored in their bodies, first in the streets and soon after in the progressive care and resuscitation units. In two months, he produced 13,000 images: 6,500 in the streets of Paris and 6,500 in various French hospitals, where he photographed caregivers and patients in the dedicated Covid-19 units, sometimes sleeping in the hospital for days.

The Paris Opera’s 3e Scène (third stage) commissioned Agata to make Naked Life,a film using images taken from this series. In July 2020, he showed a video installation in the courtyard of the Archdiocese of Arles. 

Three months later, his work was shown simultaneously at the Brownstone Foundation, at the Carreau du Temple and at The Window in Paris, accompanying the release of his new opus, Virus, examining the social and political resonance of COVID-19. The Homo Sacer exhibition in spring 2021 takes place, symbolically, on the anniversary of the start of the crisis in France. It is a chance for the artist to show a set of more substantive works in China, and to contrast the different series with film, texts and installations.

About Antoine d'Agata

Born in Marseille, Antoine d'Agata is currently recognized as one of the great photographers of his generation. He left France in 1983 to explore the world for 10 years. While living in New York in 1990, he developed his interest in photography by taking Larry Clark and Nan Goldin's classes at the International Center of Photography. Upon returning to France in 1993, he published his first photographic books: De Mala Muerte and Mala Nochein 1998. The following year, the Vu agency began to show his work. He published Hometown in 2001, which won the Niépce Prize for young photographers. And he continued to publish regularly after this, with Vortex and Insomnia in 2003, Stigma in 2004 and Manifesto in 2005. 

About Chengdu Contemporary Image Museum

Located on the banks of the Fu River, the Chengdu Contemporary Image Museum is the centerpiece of Fuhe Photo Park, China's first park devoted to photography. It spans 7,500 meter-square and includes several exhibition rooms, a conference room, a library, and many spaces for educational projects aimed at the general public.

Trees

Friday July 9, 2021 – Sunday October 10, 2021 

Power Station of Art
Opening hours: from 11am to 7pm Tuesday to Sunday

Closed on Mondays except bank holidays

Huangpu Qu

The Power Station of Art and the Cartier Foundation for Contemporary Art are showing Treesthis summer in Shanghai. With more than 200 works by over 30 artists from China, Latin America, India, Iran and Europe, the exhibition pays tribute to trees: a major source of aesthetic inspiration for human societies since time immemorial. It also echoes recent scientific discoveries about plants’ intelligence and sensitivity. 

Through its collection of paintings, photographs, films, drawings and installations, Trees collates the testimonies of researchers and artists who have looked upon the world of plants in awe. It shows the beauty and the biological richness of these leading lights of the living world, which are currently threatened by mass deforestation.

The exhibition was shown for the first time in 2019 under the name We Treesat the Cartier Foundation for Contemporary Art in Paris, where it was a resounding success. Alongside the anthropologist Bruce Albert, it brought together a community of artists, botanists and scientists who have forged a strong, intimate bond with trees throughout their scientific and artistic careers, such as Francis Hallé, Stefano Mancuso, Luiz Zerbini and Fabrice Hyber. 

Two years later, the Cartier Foundation for Contemporary Art and the Power Station of Art joined forces to expand the exploratory work done in Paris and create a new version of the exhibition for Shanghai. This new exhibit is enriched with works by Chinese artists Huang Yong Ping, Hu Liu and Zhang Enli, and an installation by Italian architect Stefano Boeri's Shanghai studio that invites the public to step inside the Liuzhou Forest City, a new form of urban architecture hosting more than 40,000 trees. With an audio-visual route that expands the sensory experience, Treesgives the floor to the artists and thinkers who support the project.

Beyond the exhibition, a special program of film screenings, conferences and shows at the Power Station of Art will be a chance for new encounters between artists, scientists and the public.

The curatorial committee is made up of Hervé Chandès, Director General of the Cartier Foundation, Gong Yan, Director of the Power Station of Art, Bruce Albert, anthropologist, Fei Dawei, art critic and exhibition curator, and Isabelle Gaudefroy, Director of Programming and Artistic Projects at the Cartier Foundation.

The exhibition is an extension of the collaboration begun in 2018 between the Power Station of Art and the Cartier Foundation, which in recent years has led to the joint presentation of exhibitions in Shanghai including A Beautiful Elsewhere, Junya Ishigami's Freeing Architecture, and Jean Nouvel's In my Head, in my Eye, Belonging...” The collaboration has involved the following artists: Efacio Álvarez, Herman Álvarez, Eurides Asque Gómez, Stefano Boeri, Johanna Calle, Jorge Carema, Alex Cerveny, Raymond Depardon & Claudine Nougaret, Floriberta Fermin, Gustavo Gimenes, Francis Hallé, Hu Liu, Huang Yong Ping, Fabrice Hyber, Luc Jacquet, Joseca, Clemente Juliuz, Kalepi, Mahmoud Khan, Angélica Klassen, Esteban Klassen, Cesare Leonardi & Franca Stagi, Stefano Mancuso, Jivya Soma Mashe, Sebastian Mejia, Marcos Ortiz, Santidio Pereira, Osvaldo Pitoe, Raimundo Romero, Jérôme Schlomoff, Afonso Tostes, Adriana Varejão, Cássio Vasconcellos, Ehuana Yaira, Luiz Zerbini and Zhang Enli.

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The invisible: X-Ray art

Wuhan Sunday April 4, 2021 – Wednesday May 19, 2021 Wuhan Art Museum

Changsha Saturday July 24, 2021 – Tuesday August 24, 2021 Union Real Estate and Wenhua University

Harbin September 10 October 20 2021, Westred Art Museum

Chengdu October to November 2021 

The hidden face of French museum’s greatest artworks

Do you dream of seeing the invisible?

Of knowing what Picasso was thinking? 

Of finding out what lies beneath the Mona Lisa or Les Demoiselles d'Avignon?

Sixty-four works of art, including eight of the greatest painters of all time, are passed through an x-ray machine!

Picasso, da Vinci, Manet, Rembrandt, Van Gogh, Courbet, Poussin, Delacroix: all laid bare!

This exhibition organized by l'Institut Français of China, the Consulate General of France in Wuhan and the Wuhan Museum of Fine Arts is one of the top events of the 2021 Croisements Festival in Wuhan. Supported by Union Real Estate, it will tour the Chinese cities of Changsha, Harbin and Chengdu before returning to Wuhan at the end of the year. 

A UNIQUE PROJECT: ART AT THE BORDER OF MEDICINE 

Using radiography, a medical technique, the Parisian artist, Xavier Lucchesi, produced X-Rays of works by the great artists (Picasso, Courbet, Manet, Van Gogh) in collaboration with the France’s top museums (the Louvre, the Picasso Museum, the Quai Branly)... and Paris hospitals. He wanted to offer a unique journey through the history of art, using “invisible” aspects to explore the hidden face of various works. Xavier Lucchesi is the only contemporary artist permitted to radiograph works from the Musées de France collections.

About the artist

Xavier Lucchesi was born in 1959. A photography graduate from the University of Aix Marseille, his thesis was entitled X-rays and Images. He is the only contemporary French artist working with X-rays. Over the years and in various exhibitions he has X-rayed some of the most iconic contemporary artworks, such as the Mona Lisa and self-portraits by Delacroix and Van Gogh. An agreement with the Center for Research and Restoration of French Art Museums allows him to collaborate with many museums, including the Louvre, the Picasso Museum, and the Musée d’Orsay. His work exists at the borderline between art and science, the visible and the invisible, with the aim of telling how an artwork came about. Lucchesi’s work has been exhibited at venues throughout the world including the Picasso Museum and the Palais de la Bourse in Paris, Berkeley University in the USA, and the Seoul Museum of Photography in South Korea. It has also featured at numerous biennials and festivals such as Art Shanghai, the Daegu Biennale and the Busan Biennale. He has been interested in X-ray portraits of men and women in the street for a number of years.

Monet and the Impressionist Masters

Thursday March 18, 2021 – Sunday August 1, 2021 
Bund One Art Museum
1 Zhongshan Dongyilu Huangpu Qu

The exhibition features a selection of around 60 remarkable works, all from the collection of the Musée Marmottan Monet. It celebrates the Impressionists, who played a pioneering role in Western modern art in the second half of the nineteenth century.

Twenty flagship paintings by Claude Monet, the leader of the Impressionist movement, as well as those by Edgar Degas, Camille Pissarro, Berthe Morisot, Auguste Renoir and Paul Signac are on show. They testify to the unique qualities of each artist and their shared preoccupation with working in the open air, “painting fast” and capturing the atmosphere in paint. This extraordinary collection will also be a unique opportunity to grasp the eminently modern nature of Monet's work. Late pieces including Water Liliesare clear precursors to the abstract expressionism of artists such as Joan Mitchell or Zao Wou-Ki. 

Franco-Chinese Fashion Night

Sunday May 9, 2021 – Sunday May 9, 2021 

Sea World Culture and Arts Center, Shenzhen
1187 Wanghai Road, Shekou, Nanshan Qu Shenzhen Shi

For this first edition of Franco-Chinese Fashion Night in Shenzhen, Design Society will host a  comparative exhibition of two French and Chinese fashion labels: Andrea Crews and Sankuanz. 

Sankuanz was founded by designer Shangguan Zhe in 2013. With a focus on common influences and visible conflicts between technological innovations and social institutions, the label deconstructs reality through fashion and tracks a possible high-tech near future. Integrating different types of interwoven and reconstructed clothing, its collections reveal a determined, collectivist spirit.

Andrea Crews is a French innovative brand, a fashion label, and an artistic collective. It has a young, diverse following that moves fluidly between street culture and high fashion. Its collections are based on “upcycling”: a unique, innovative technique that has defined the brand from day one. 

The selected photographs highlight the inventiveness and diversity of two designers who pay great attention to the sustainability of their lines. The exhibition launch will be accompanied by a round table of French and Chinese experts discussing the links between sustainable development and fashion.

FOCUS ON JEROME BEL

Saturday May 15, 2021, 5.30pm – Saturday May 15, 2021, 10.30pm

Institut français of Beijing

Guangcai International Mansion, 18 Gongti Xilu Chaoyang Qu

In French and Chinese

Simultaneous translation in Chinese sign language

Surtitle projection in Chinese

Event accessible for persons with reduced mobility 

Assistance provided by volunteers at the event

Jérôme Bel's Galawas shown in Xiamen alongside Chinese artists as part of the second edition of the Luminous Festival launched by Body On & On in 2020. With conditions battered by the COVID-19 pandemic, the work involved online rehearsals prior to a remarkable collective performance involving professional and amateur dancers, children, the elderly and the disabled. Around 20 dancers from various backgrounds unveiled physical forms and an aura that blurred boundaries, encouraging a reinvented vision for the meaning of dance.

For the Croisements Festival, l’Institut Français of Beijing and the Luminous Festival present an extraordinary evening centred on the artist and the choreographer. The Gala and Disabled Theatre screenings and the accompanying round table will be a chance to understand and reframe Jerome Bel's work, taking disability as a source of creativity and social cohesion.

About Jérôme Bel

Jérôme Bel was born in 1964. He lives in Paris and works all over the world. After studying at the National Center for Contemporary Dance in Angers between 1984 and 1985, he danced for several choreographers before creating his first piece in 1994. Jerome Bel is a leading figure in the contemporary dance scene. His work explores the body and the grammar of dance, both as a material and as a language in a state of constant, reciprocal reinvention. In 2012, he created Disabled Theatre (2012), a show with professional actors with mental disabilities from Theatre Hora, a company based in Zurich. With Gala (2015), he brings professionals and amateurs from various backgrounds together on the stage. The films of his shows are regularly screened during contemporary art biennials and in museums.

About the Luminous Festival

The Luminous Festival is the first non-profit arts festival in China aimed at developing inclusive arts. It was launched by Body On & On in 2019 and is jointly managed by Body On & On and the Foundation for People with Disabilities in Xiamen. In the spirit of public welfare and equality, the festival is an artistic stage for people with disabilities and minorities.

ZHANG LIPING: The imperishable fragrance

Wednesday May 19, 2021, 7.30pm – Wednesday May 19, 2021, 9pm

Forbidden City Concert Hall

Parc Zhongshan, Xichang'an Lu Dongcheng Qu

The great Chinese soprano Zhang Liping joins the expressive talents of pianist Zhang Jialin and harpist Sun Shimeng for an extraordinary journey through the French lyrical song repertoire. 

The program highlights the evolution of musical language. Zhang Liping’s brilliant, supple voice is blessed with delicate, round colors and a highly versatile range. The evening will be a chance to enjoy iconic works from French opera and the mélodies françaises including Bizet'sCarmen, Massenet's Le Cid, Charpentier's Louiseand Gounod's Faust.

There will also be an anthology of seminal passages from the mélodies françaises, with the genuis of  Gabriel Fauré, Henri Duparc and Hector Berlioz setting the poetry of Paul Verlaine, Victor Hugo, Charles Baudelaire and Théophile Gautier to music. The soprano savors the words of these expressive, intimate and dynamic cantilenas, before tenderly entrusting them to the audience.

About Zhang Liping

Born in 1965 in Wuhan, Zhang Liping is one of China's leading sopranos. She trained at the Beijing Central Conservatory and the Vancouver Academy of Music in Canada. Musicality allied with a great opera voice is a powerful combination for concerts and recitals, as is the case here for this top soprano who captivates her audience with both opera arias and mélodies françaises. 

Zhang Liping has performed regularly at the world's best venues, including among others the Paris Opera, the Royal Opera House, the Metropolitan Opera House, the Staatsoper Unter den Linden, the Oslo National Opera House, the New York City Opera House, the Barcelona Opera House and NCPA, taking the lead role in numerous productions on a regular basis. She is head of the lyrical song department at Beijing Central Conservatory.

About Zhang Jialin

Zhang Jialin is Professor of Piano Accompaniment at the Beijing Central Conservatory. He works and performs with some of the great names in lyrical song and its accompaniment at China's most prestigious venues. He has released twenty albums on classical music labels including CRC, UMG and NCPA Classics. Passionate about chamber music, he is also a member of the DNA Piano Trio.

About Sun Shimeng

Sun Shimeng graduated with Honours from Manchester's Royal Northern College of Music in 2018. In that same year, she took second prize in the duo harp competition at the Wales International Harp Festival, and third prize at the Open Ensemble Competition at the North London Festival of Music. She has collaborated with many orchestras both in the UK and internationally, notably during a 2019 tour with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales with the famous conductor Zhang Xian. She has also taken part in masterclasses by renowned harpists such as Isabelle Perrin, Isabelle Moretti, Doug Rioth and Emiliya Moskvitina. Sun Shimeng teaches the harp at the Tianjin Conservatory.

About the Forbidden City Concert Hall

Founded in 1942 and located near the Forbidden City, the Forbidden City Concert Hall (FCCH), was rebuilt in 1997 with the support of the city of Beijing, reopening in 1999. FCCH is the top venue for the China Philharmonic Orchestra and the Beijing Symphony Orchestra, and one of the main stages in the Beijing Music Festival. Each year, it stages more than 300 projects across various genres including classical concerts, jazz concerts and traditional Chinese music.

100% SAINT-SAËNS - DNA Piano Trio

Thursday June 24, 2021, 7.30pm – Thursday June 24, 2021, 9.15pm

Forbidden City Concert Hall

Donghuamen Road, Dongcheng District, Beijing Donghuamen lu Dongcheng Qu

To mark the centenary of the disappearance of Camille Saint-Saëns, the DNA Piano Trio (Zhang Jingye, Song Zhao and Zhang Jialin) joins forces with Zhou Jing, a young and talented composer, bringing a unique tribute to the Forbidden City Concert Hall .

Few musicians in the nineteenth century were as versatile as Camille Saint-Saëns. He worked in almost all the musical genres of his era, creating influential, powerful works that went on to become stylistic templates. Inspired by Mendelssohn, Schumann, Wagner and Liszt, and a great admirer of Berlioz, Saint -Saëns is the natural heir to the romantic school. In this regard, he was the first person in France to conduct the symphonic poem, an important genre for musical romanticism, making him a chamber music pioneer and one of the great reformers of French symphonic music.

The concert offers an overview of the composer's most important work. First, a trio for piano, violin and cello which marks one of the great inspirational moments of his youth. Next, two Spanish music-inspired virtuoso pieces for violin, Rondo Capriccioso and Havanaise. And finally, compositions adapted by Zhou Jing for trio including the symphonic works Danse Macabreand Carnival of the Animalsand two extracts from the opera Samson and Delilah, all of which showcase this nineteenth-century genius’ unique orchestral range.

About the DNA Piano Trio

The DNA Piano Trio is one of China's finest chamber music ensembles. It was conceived in 2005 as the joint brainchild of three Central Beijing Conservatory prize-winners with a shared love of chamber music: pianist Zhang Jia Lin, violinist Zhang Jinye and cellist Song Zhao. The DNA Piano Trio sheds new light on the great works of chamber music by expanding their repertoire to include arrangements of other musical genres, for example the symphony with Chinese composers Zhou Jing and Chen Xinlei. The DNA Piano Trio is regularly invited to perform in prestigious concert halls and festivals throughout China.

About the Forbidden City Concert Hall

Founded in 1942 and located near to the Forbidden City, the Forbidden City Concert Hall was rebuilt in 1997 with the support of the city of Beijing, reopening in 1999. It is the lead venue for the China Philharmonic Orchestra and the Beijing Symphony Orchestra, and one of the main stages in the Beijing Music Festival. Each year, it organises more than 300 projects across various genres including classical concerts, jazz concerts and traditional Chinese music.

The Fête de la Musique in China

Saturday June 19, 2021 – Saturday June 19, 2021, 11.59pm

Théâtre 77

77 Meishuhou Avenue Dongcheng Qu

Created on 21 June 1982 at the behest of then Minister of Culture, Jack Lang, the first edition of the Fête de la Musique in France was a great success, spreading quickly to all four corners of the world. It has quickened the hearts of spectators in many Chinese cities every year since its launch in Wuhan 14 years ago.

The concept is simple: an eclectic program for both emerging and established artists to give free concerts in legendary venues or in the open air to celebrate the summer solstice.

In 2021, after a year away due to the health crisis, the Fête de la Musique is up and running again in a hybrid format, with Chinese and French artists on stage, online and on screen.

A new addition this year is a mini-program allowing all fans to meet in a unique and friendly virtual setting.

The mini-program will give access to the schedule in all partner cities. Fans will be able to reserve their place online and share opinions, comments and photos with the whole community.

FRENCH WAVES - An artistic summer

·       From July 8 – July 14, 2021

Fédération de la haute couture et de la mode : Haute couture online

·       From July 15 – July 21, 2021:

Room with a view, piece choreographed by (LA)HORDE

·       From July 22 – July 28, 2021:

Concert by the National Orchestra of France

Visit of the Château de Versailles

·       From July 29 to August 4, 2021

Artists films from the Jeu de Paume

Private visit of the Palais de Tokyo

·       From August 5 – August 11, 2021 

Show from the Festival d’Avignon

French Waves is the first digital festival exclusively for French artistic creation in China. After the success of the first edition in 2020, it is extending its collaboration with the digital channel Tencent Art and several major French institutions including the Avignon Festival, the Ballet National de Marseille, the Jeu de Paume,  the Palais de Tokyo, Radio France, and the Fédération de la Haute Couture et de la Mode.

Each week, the avant-garde qualities and excellence of the French artistic scene that have come to define the Croisements Festival can be seen in an artist’s work, a choreographer’s performance, a director’s production, an orchestral program or a visit to an exhibition. These exclusive video contents, which are available for free online, function as both encounters and artistic projects.

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La Fédération de la Haute Couture et de la Mode - Paris Fashion Week

La Fédération de la Haute Couture et de la Mode brings together fashion brands focussed on creation and international development. It aims to promote French fashion culture, in which haute couture and creation play a leading role by resolutely combining traditional know-how and contemporary technologies. It contributes to Paris’ enduring status as the world’s fashion capital, in particular thanks to Paris Fashion Week®, which it coordinates. 

The Avignon Festival

Avignon is a name cherished by all theatre lovers. Created in 1947 by Jean Vilar, the Avignon Festival is one of the most important international events in the contemporary performing arts calendar. Every year in July, Avignon is transformed into a gigantic theatre, with multiple stages throughout the city.

Jeu de Paume

An iconic cultural institution at the Tuileries Gardens in Paris, the Jeu de Paume is an art centre focussed on the dissemination of images (photography, video, contemporary art, cinema, online creation). It tackles a range of historical or contemporary stories, shifting between resonance and dissonance. Its exhibitions give visibility to featured artists, some of whom are already famous, others of whom are unknown or emerging.

Palais de Tokyo

The Palais de Tokyo is where today's artists come alive. It is also the largest centre for contemporary creation in Europe and a one-of-a-kind exhibition space. A renegade wasteland resembling a palace, an anti-museum in a state of ongoing metamorphosis, the Palais de Tokyo has kept Paris on its toes since 2002. The program is dedicated to emerging creation as well as to more established artists from the French and international scenes. It features thematic and monographic exhibitions, large-scale artistic projects and open invitations for artists to engage with all its spaces.

The Orchestre National de France

Formed by Radio France, the Orchestre National de France is the country’s first permanent symphony orchestra. Founded in 1934, it grew out of the desire for an “instrument” to address the symphonic repertoire. This ambition, combined with radio broadcasts of its concerts, has made the Orchestre National de France an important institution. Since 2020, it has been conducted by Cristian Măceralu.

(La)Horde-Ballet National de Marseille

Founded in 2013, (La) Horde brings together three artists: Marine Brutti, Jonathan Debrouwer and Arthur Harel. Together, they question the codes of different artistic disciplines, particularly live performance and contemporary art. (La) Horde has headed the Ballet National de Marseille since September 2019,  creating choreographies, films, video installations and performances, with the body in motion as its unwavering central theme.

The Palace of Versailles

The Palace of Versailles dates to the seventeenth century. It was by turns a hunting lodge then a center of power, before becoming an iconic part of French cultural heritage. It diverse collections include some 60,000 works, reflecting the Palace's dual vocation: as a place formerly inhabited by kings and their courts; and as a museum dedicated “to all of France’s glories” inaugurated by Louis-Philippe in 1837.

About Tencent Art

Tencent Art is part of the Tencent video group, which had more than 112 million subscribers in the first half of 2020. It is China's number one artistic and cultural platform.

Launched in September 2018, it seeks to promote live performance and visual arts through multiple online formats including show recordings, videos on demand, livestreaming and interactive games.

Since then, Tencent Art has set up strategic collaborations with prestigious institutions such as The Royal Opera House in London, the Vienna State Opera, the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, NCPA in Beijing, Shanghai Grand Theatre, Beijing International Music Festival, and The National Gallery of Victoria in Australia.


[All images via French Embassy in China]

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