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Chennie Huang

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Si Nian (2003), film still
Si Nian (2003), film still
Over the past few years, I have made a series of films and videos dealing with my feelings of alienation and cultural displacement as a Chinese American. My aim is to explore the emotional and psychological complexity of living in two separate cultural worlds simultaneously.

Si Nian (part I) is a work based on the fantasy and nostalgia about my prematurely deceased grandparents. It reflects my romanticized longing and desire to uncover an unfamiliar past in my family. In this piece, I use classic film footage from films made by my great uncle, Huang Zuo-Lin in the 50s and family photographs taken in Europe and the United States in the 40s. I want to convey a feeling of nostalgic longing for the idealized lives of the prior generation.

Jia (2005), video still
Jia (2005), video still
Si Nian (2003), film still
Si Nian (2003), film still
Jia (2005), video still
Jia (2005), video still
Jia (2005), video still
Jia (2005), video still
Jia is a documentation of a personal journey in search of my childhood home in Shanghai. In Summer 2005, I return to Shanghai after thirteen years of residency in the United States. The city of Shanghai has drastically transformed economically, socially, and culturally in the past thirteen years. On the day when I arrive in my childhood neighborhood, the only thing I recognize is the front entrance, and the building of my primary school, which is just across the street. Out side of my neighborhood, I find the noises from busy traffic and from crowded streets of pedestrians and bicycle riders too overwhelming. In the midst of this busy metropolis, I discover home is more a state of mind than its actual physical existence.

In Si Nian (part II), I uncovered parts of the nostalgic mystery of my grandparents. In front of department of architecture at Tong Ji University, I meet with a PhD student of Professor Li and Professor Lou. Professor Li and Professor Lou were students of my grandfather Huang Zou-xin, and Huang Zou-xin was the founder of the department of architecture at Tong Ji University in the late 50s to 60s.
My grandmother Chen Jiu was an English professor at Shang Yi Medical School. Professor Li tells me many anecdotes from her student days at Tong Ji University. She remembers the last time she saw my grandmother was just few days before Culture Revolution had full-blown into a mayhem in the old streets where I use to live.
Si Nian (2005), video still
Si Nian (2005), video still
Chennie Huang
New York, NY
New York
North America

T: 001 917 691 4157
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