cinetoile

CINETOILE - SERIES | 2008 | SAN FRANCISCO |

WUYONG | USELESS DIRECTED BY JIA ZHANG-KE / CINETOILE-SERIES
Tuesday, October 28, 2008 - 8 PM | Chinese Fashion designer Ma Ke will introduce the movie.


Through the hissing buzz of sewing we are carried through the day to day happenings of a Chinese garment factory. What clothing means to many of the workers seems irrelevant. On a macrocosmic whole, making clothing is simply their job, like making anything else. Ma Ke, however, the designer featured in the three part documentary entitled "Useless", by Director Jia Zhang-Ke, fashion is hardly a shallow endeavor. After ten years of running a successful label of her own, Ma Ke has taken clothing intoher own hands, literally. Ma Ke handcrafts everything personally for her latest venture, a collection titled "WUYONG", which translates to "Useless". Her clothing, though strikingly sculptural and earthbound, is hardly anything Ready-to-Wear, hence "Useless", but certainly of the caliber of clothes one cherishes. As a finishing touch, Ma Ke buries her clothing in the ground and lets earth take over, to give them history. This handcrafted artisanship signifies the opposite of what China is known for in the fashion industry: the assembly line and mass production. Ma Ke's designs are permanent with stories, organic histories, and emotions. Finally, in the third segment of the documentary, we return from the glittering world of Paris, France to the dusty mining town of Fenyang, in the province of Shanxi, China. Inside one tailor shop, the viewer acts as voyeur into memoirs and the meaning of fashion, according to the local clothiers. In its paradoxical contexts, "Useless" is a quiet exploration of fashion in a powerful voice.


With a patient, painterly eye, Jia's vivid characterizations and landscapes possess a mesmerizing, often melancholic beauty, and are less political than humanist in their pointed critiques of China's current historical trends. …a ruminative essay on the meaning and function of clothing in Chinese society: how it is manufactured and sold, as well as the contrasting relationships between people and their clothing, according to their status in society… Christopher Bourne, Meniscus Magazine


SUNDANCE KABUKI CINEMA - 1881 POST STREET - SAN FRANCISCO CA 94115 - TEL 415 929 4650

WUYONG | Useless | Directed by Jia Zhang-Ke |
Invited to screen at the 51st London Film Festival 2007 | 45th New York Film Festival 2007 | Closing film of Hong Kong Asian Film Festival 2007 | Horizon Documentary Award at Venice Film Festival 2007

The Arts of Fashion Foundation is a San Francisco-based 501(c)(3), public, non-profit organization, linking both academics and professionals alike and is dedicated in fostering international cultural exchange through the creation of a variety of educational programs meant to facilitate critical thinking and advance the field of fashion among artists, designers, scholars and students.The primary focus of the foundation is the continuous support of creativity and design process in fashion and the arts linked to it.