Skip to content

Download our APP to rate this film or add it to your wishlist!

Free APP available for iOS and Android devices on the App Store and Google Play

Man in Black

by Wang Bing
France, USA, UK, 2023, 60’
Presented at the 16th edition of Lo schermo dell’arte, 2023
Photography by Caroline Champetier
Editing by Claire Atherton
Sound by Erwan Kerzenet, Emmanuel Soland
Producers: K.Lihong, Sonia Buchman, Nicolas R. De La Mothe
vo: Chinese; st: English, Italian
The empty, semi-dark gallery and stage of the Théâtre des Bouffes du Nord in Paris resonate with the voice and naked body of the eighty-six-year-old Chinese composer Wang Xilin. Xilin, a major contemporary Chinese classical musician, recounts his painful trajectory from Communist Party member (he joined the People’s Liberation Army in 1949) to dissident determined to defend freedom of expression. His naked body bears the marks of the beatings he was subjected to during the Cultural Revolution of the 1960s. Signs that Caroline Champetier’s photography, reminiscent of Lucian Freud and Francis Bacon, imbues with cinematic intensity. From his words we understand how his wounds have found symbolic representation in symphonies he composed, which form the film’s soundtrack. In an extraordinary shot, Xilin performs the music on the piano at center stage. With Man in Black Wang Bing, prominent figure in the international panorama of documentary cinema and artist whose Youth (Spring) was in competition at the last Cannes Film Festival, offers a lucid portrait of a man who made art his form of protest and resistance.
Wang Bing (1967 Xi’an, Shaanxi Province. Lives and works between France and China).
His recent solo exhibitions include: Le Bal, Paris (2021); Kunsthalle Zürich, Zurich (2019); Museo Reina Sofia and Filmoteca Española, Madrid (2018); CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts, San Francisco (2016); Centre Pompidou , Paris (2014). He participated in Documenta 14 (2017).
His films have been in competition in major international festivals such as Berlinale, Cannes, FIDMarseille (Grand Prix 2003), IFFR, Locarno Film Festival (Golden Leopard 2017), Venice International Film Festival (Best Film in the Orizzonti section, 2012).
Selected Filmography
2023 Youth (Spring); 2018 Dead Souls; 2017 MRS. Fang; 2016 Bitter Money; 2016 TA’ANG; 2014 Traces; 2014 Father and Sons; 2013 Til Madness do us part; 2012 Alone; 2012 Three Sisters; 2010 The Ditch; 2009 Man With no Name; 2008 Coal Money; 2008 Crude Oil; 2007 Fengming; a chinese memoir; 2007 Brutality Factory; 1999-2003 West of the tracks.