North of the Mountain

'Zhou Tao spent nearly two years in an eco-industrial park at the foot of the Kunlun Mountains. The result is a rich repertoire of images that swiftly alternate between natural landscapes of sandstorms, dust clouds and the changing seasons, and realistic portraits of humans and other species fighting for survival in a state of exception. For the artist, every act of image-making is a direct confrontation with reality, and the perceptions, feelings and memories engaged by the filming process can be converted through and into images, which have the potential to connect the human eye with the body, and to revise a world heavily mediated by technology. Human agency is not only manifested in transforming the external world, but can also be exercised by preserving the internal, poetic space. The coupling of realism and romanticism creates a mesmerizing tension in Zhou Tao’s work' (Nikita Yingqian Cai). 1

Co-commissioned by Times Museum and Council, his latest work North of the Mountain is shot with an 8k resolution camera, which meticulously combines the tactility of light and the machine's ISO sensitivity to capture shades of brightness and darkness beyond the capacity of the human eye – it is the artist’s radical attempt to ecologicalize the body of the filmmaker as well as filmmaking technologies. 2

The film has premièred on the occasion of Zhou Tao: The Ridge in A Bronze Mirror, solo show of the artist at Times Museum, Guangdong, curated by Nikita Yingqian Cai, on view 23 March – 26 May 2019.

North of the Mountain, 2019

By

  • Zhou Tao

Produced by

  • Vitamin Creative Space

Co-commissioned by

  • Council
  • Times Museum

Supported by

  • KADIST
  • Samdani Art Foundation

    image: film still, Zhou Tao, North of the Mountain, 2019, single channel 4K DCI video (17:9, color, with sound), 77mins courtesy the artist and Vitamin Creative Space
1. Zhou Tao, North of the Mountain, 2019, film still, courtesy the artist and Vitamin Creative Space
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2. Zhou Tao, North of the Mountain, 2019, film still, courtesy the artist and Vitamin Creative Space
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