Extended Description & Attendee bios

Principal Investigator:
Geoffrey Alan Rhodes, Assistant Professor, School of Film and Animation,
Rochester Institute of Technology

Alan Rhodes is a filmmaker, media artist, writer and member of the faculty at the
School of Film and Animation at the Rochester Institute of Technology. His
research interests include realist filmmaking and new media cinema. He has
received ongoing support from the international Princess Grace Foundation,
NYSCA, and the Fulbright Foundation. His new feature film, Buried Land,
premiered in 2010 at the Tribeca Film Festival in NYC.

Film Programmer:
Bingxia Yu, graduate student, SUNY-Buffalo

A native of Shanghai, Bingxia Yu is an arts journalist, translator, and media artist.
She has written extensively on Chinese film and art. Her research interests
include the representations of spectacle in Chinese Sixth Generation film and
visual symbols in Chinese contemporary art.

Over the past two decades there has been growing international recognition of
contemporary Chinese cinema. Works of the “Sixth Generation” Chinese
filmmakers have received awards from the major European and American film
festivals, and they are known for their low-budget production, their daring break
with government censorship, and their resulting fresh, experimental style and
clear determination to use filmmaking as a reflection of contemporary Chinese
society in its transitional period. They have created some of the most important
films of the last decades, yet those films are only beginning to be distributed in
the U.S. Their critical importance far exceeds their availability to the international

ʻThe Sixth Generationʼ: Symposium on the New Wave of Chinese Cinema is a
two day symposium in October, 2010, at the Rochester Institute of Technology in
Rochester, New York. Preceding the symposium, screenings of exciting recent
films, never before seen in the community, will be held at local theaters. R.I.T. is
well situated to host this symposium: RIT contains one of the top imaging arts
schools in the country, and it is in close proximity to one of the top arts criticism
programs in the country at the University of Rochester. The screenings will draw
from the general community and multiple Rochester student bodies. Three public
sessions of roundtable discussions will bring together scholars, researchers,
filmmakers, and artists from around the region and internationally to open up
dialogues on the cultural, political and theoretical conditions reflected in the Sixth
Generation Cinema.

The symposium has a specific goal in mind in line with R.I.T.'s status as a
university concerned with filmmaking. The independent spirit of the Sixth
Generation Filmmakers and their successful experiences with low-budget
production can open up a new horizon for local students and filmmakers. The
new trends in film represented are not important only through a lens of cultural,
geographic, or political analysis; they represent important vectors of change in
the art of film.

Visiting symposium participants:

We are excited to have a diverse group of acclaimed scholars and artists
attending the symposium. Research areas range from filmmaking, film
programming, philosophy, history, film and communication studies, French New
Wave, and literature. We anticipate broad ranging discussions both in and out of
the symposium and hope that new cross-disciplinary insights result.

In addition to an audience of graduate and undergraduate students from
surrounding universities and interested artists and scholars from the community,
the symposium has specially invited:

Zhu Wen, Chinese filmmaker, Director of the new film ʻThomas Maoʼ (2010).

Zhu Wen is acclaimed both as an author and as a filmmaker working in Beijing.
He has been intimately involved in the tight Beijing filmmaking community that
has given rise to many of the most famous ʻSixth Generationʼ films. His newest
film, ʻThomas Maoʼ, provides a fresh take on the style and content of new
Chinese cinema. Zhu Wen will screen a selection from his films.

Kevin Lee, Vice President of Programming and Education, dGenerate Films

Kevin Lee is Vice President of Programming and Education for dGenerate Films.
His responsibilities include identifying the best works of independent Chinese
cinema for the dGenerate catalog and consulting with educators on using
dGenerate films in their teaching and scholarship. An award-winning filmmaker,
his credits include the award-winning documentaries “Dastaar: Defending Sikh
Identity” and “Take a Look: Chinatown NYC Post-9/11.” He is currently producing
“Shooting Down Pictures,” a series of online video essays on great works of
world cinema.

Professor Yingjin Zhang, Director of the Chinese Studies Program, UCSD
Dept. Literature

Yingjin Zhang is an editorial board member of Cultural Studies (Beijing); Film Art
(Beijing); Journal of Chinese Cinemas (UK); Scope: An Online Journal of Film
Studies (UK). He has Co-edited From Underground to Independent: Alternative
Film Culture in Contemporary China (Rowman and Littlefield, 2006) and is author
of Screening China: Critical Interventions, Cinematic Reconfigurations, and the
Transnational Imaginary in Contemporary Chinese Cinema. (Ann Arbor: Center
for Chinese Studies, University of Michigan, 2002).

E.K. Tan, Asst. Prof., Dep. Comparative Literature & Cult. Studies, SUNY
Stony Brook

E. K. Tan is an Assistant Professor at the State University of New York at Stony
Brook in the Department of Comparative Literary and Cultural Studies. His
research interests include Sinophone studies, Southeast Asian studies, Chinese-
language cinemas, theories of cultural translation and postcolonialism. He is
working on a book manuscript entitled Translational Identity: Articulations of
Chineseness in Narratives of the Nanyang Diaspora.

Shu-chin Tsui, Associate Professor of Asian Studies, Bowdoin College

Shu-chin Tsui is the author of Women Through the Lens: Gender and Nation in a
Century of Chinese Cinema (University of Hawaii Press, 2003) and Associate
Professor at Bowdoin College in Maine.

Zhen Zhang, Associate Professor, NYU Tisch (tentative)

Professor Zhang is the author of An Amorous History of the Silver Screen:
Shanghai Cinema 1896-1937 (University of Chicago Press, 2005 and Editor of
The Urban Generation: Chinese Cinema and Society at the Turn of the 21st
Century (Duke University Press, 2007). She is recipient of the Andrew W. Mellon
Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Humanities (1998-1999); Society of Cinema
Studies Dissertation Award (2000); Faculty Fellowship, the Project on Cities and
Urban Knowledges at the International Center for Advanced Studies (NYU, 2000-
01); J. P. Getty Fellowship in the History of Art and the Humanities (2001-2002);
National Endowments for the Humanities Summer Stipend (2006). She has
organized or co-organized Chinese films series and events at New York
University, as well as for the Film Society at the Lincoln Center for the Performing
Arts, the Museum of Modern Art, and other venues.

Suzie Young, Associate Prof., Historical, Critical and Theoretical Studies
York University

Suzie S.F. Young is a film scholar and cultural theorist specializing in Asian
cinema, the horror genre and feminism and popular culture. Originally from Hong
Kong, she has lectured on a variety of cultural topics including the New Wave
Cinemas of the three Chinas, television and exilic identities of the Chinese
diaspora in Canada, and the oeuvre of Canadian director David Cronenberg.

Professor Greta Niu, University of Rochester, Dept. English

Greta Niu's research investigates networks of film, media, and technology, with
an interest in material cultural productions. Her book manuscript Chinese
Diasporic Cinemas: Migration, Culture and Globalization analyzes constructions
of Chinese diasporas and, by extension, questions the phenomenon called
globalization. She is Assistant Professor of English at University of Rochester,
and a member of the faculty of the Film and Media Studies Program.

Professor Sharon Willis, University of Rochester, Dept. Visual and Cultural

Sharon Willis is Professor of Art History and Visual and Cultural Studies at
University of Rochester and the Director of the Film and Media Studies Program.
She is the author of High Contrast: Race and Gender in Contemporary Cinema.
Her research interests include Feminist film analysis and French New Wave film.

Prof. Timothy H. Engström, Department of Philosophy, RIT

Tim Engström is a New York stater who studied initially in New York, then in
Sweden, Britain, and Germany—Tübingen and Göttingen—then went back to
Edinburgh, Scotland, for his Ph.D. He teaches courses in both cinema analysis,
and the philosophy of media as it relates to 'the real'.

Professor Nevan Fisher, Nazareth College, Dept. History

Nevan Fisher is an Assistant Professor of History at Nazareth College in
Rochester, NY. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Virginia. His
research interests include 20th Century Chinese Social and Cultural History; East
Asian Christianity; East and Southeast Asian Social History; Revolution and War
in Asia.

Professor Roy Roussel, University at Buffalo, Dept. English and Media

Roy Roussel is Professor of English and Media Study at SUNY at Buffalo. He is
the author of The Conversation of the Sexes. His current research interest
emphasizes on Asian Cinema and Media.