yang qian early plays

By now you’ve figured out that this week, I’m organizing the blog. Kind of. Anyway, today’s post is a treat from years past, when Shenzhen was and was transitioning from being the world’s factory. During the late 1990s and early 2000s, Yang Qian wrote plays about how dreams took root and reformed in the soil of the Special Zone. Crossroads, especially, gives insight into the lived contradictions of the 1990s, when Shenzhen was considered a city without culture, even as Neolithic sites were buried in the rush to the future. The plays included in Unclassifiable Dreams were translated and published as part of the 2008-2009 Foodscape project, which was funded by Pro Helvetia. (Just an aside, during the project, Swiss artists complained to artists from China and the US that arts funding in Switzerland was limited. In the language of China du web, we call that 烦而赛 or humble bragging. Sigh.) Enjoy:

Unclassifiable Dreams: Five Plays by Yang Qian.

Also, Divine Garbage a video from 2003, when the second line was still operational, Shekou was still a manufacturing hub and Fat Bird was an unregistered group of friends, who did guerrilla performances throughout the Special Zone (we never performed in Bao’an before its 2004 restructuring):

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