3rd Canada China International Film Festival (2018)

Posted on: 5 October 2018 by Anna Chen in Conference & Event Reports

On the 23rd of September 2018, the 3rd Canada China International Film Festival was taking place. CIE's Anna Chen was in attendance at Concordia University, Montreal, Canada, and provided this report.

What is the event?

An academic seminar on cultural understanding.

Theme: Cross-cultural Understanding through Individual Encounters and Personal Stories.

An overview of the day:

Anna: This panel attempts to bring together scholars and practitioners from both academic circles and the cultural production industry to share their ideas and understanding of how we can understand the “other” people and culture. Presentations and discussions focused on individual experiences and personal stories in the context of understanding historical as well as contemporary China and its culture.

Experts and scholars from China, Canada and the UK shared their unique insights and personal experiences on cross-cultural communication. The forum was hosted by Professor Wang Renzhong of McGill University and divided into two parts: academic forum and calligraphy exhibition.

The forum invited: Professor Chen Hongjie, Associate Dean of Peking University School of Education; Professor Niu Gengyun, Assistant Director of International Cooperation Department of Peking University; Wang Xiaoan, Peking University Chinese Promotion Office; Pu Qing, Peking University; University of Liverpool, Dr. Chen Qing, University of Quebec Cultural Scholar Lei Li; Visiting Professor of the University of Montreal Bai Shaohui; visiting professor of McGill University, Professor Yang Jie, Communication University of China, Professor Chang Ying, Tiedao University; Macy Zheng, head of the Asian Department of the McGill University Library and Dr. Lin Huaping, President of the Montreal Chinese Scholars Association.

In addition, Chinese artist Chi Hengbin, Montreal-famous artist Sara Colby and Ottawa musician Chairman George (Dr George Sapounidis) also came to the scene to enrich the forum with colourful art forms and broaden the participants' horizons.

Professor Chen Hongjie, with the title of "The Social Dimension of Calligraphy - Calligraphy and Literati Life in Ancient China", introduced Chinese traditional calligraphy art.

Lei Li gave a presentation with the theme of "Festival and Cultural Inheritance and Communication". It was a fun analysis of how to use traditional Chinese festivals as an effective way to pass on and spread Chinese culture overseas in the context of intercultural communication. .

Dr. Anna Chen focused on the interpretation of cultural differences and gave a speech titled "Chinese Students in the UK: An Intercultural Perspective."

Bai Shaohui gave a lecture titled "The Chinese Margin of a Canadian Student" with an interview of Zhu Liu, the winner of the 2017 Quebec Chinese Bridge Competition.

Dr. Lin Huaping focused on integrating China-Canada's competitive academic innovation resources and spoke on "Building a China-Canada Innovation and Entrepreneurship Platform with Broad Influence".

Chinese artist Chi Hengbin interpreted the cross-cultural comparison of visual art with his own creative process: the characteristics of Su Mei propaganda posters.

Zheng Meiqing introduced the development history of the Chinese research collection of the McGill University Library to the participants, especially the Chinese film materials and the Western collections.

Teacher Zheng Meiqing said that McGill University has courses on Chinese film research every semester. These courses are welcomed by students and everyone is actively enrolled in Chinese film research courses.

"Chairman George", Dr. George Sapounidis, gave a speech "Appreciating Chinese culture through songs", and immediately played the guitar, sang Chinese songs and won warm applause at the venue.

After the morning seminar, Montreal people who loved Chinese culture, especially the city's college students and teachers, were fortunate enough to appreciate and experience the feast of Chinese calligraphy art. Thomson House, a graduate school of McGill University, known as the Harvard University of the North, held a “Chinese Calligraphy Art Exhibition”, shown by McGill University teachers and students and Montreal citizens. Professors Zhang Guoyou, Chen Hongjie and Niu Gengyun from the famous "Calligraphy Threesomes" of Peking University created special calligraphy masterpieces for Sino-Canadian friendship and to celebrate this Canadian-Chinese International Film Festival. Also on display were works by Ms. Wang Xiaoan, Assistant Minister of International Cooperation Department of Peking University, and Ms. Pu Qing, Peking University Chinese Promotion Office.

That Sunday afternoon, the art loving people of Montreal visited in large numbers to enjoy this tremendous exhibition of traditional Chinese art, listened to the wonderful explanations of several calligraphy masters and interacted with these masters to learn about calligraphy art and its relationship with Chinese life. The participating audiences forgot about time and immersed themselves in the experience of Chinese calligraphy art.

What did you get out of the conference?

The invited presenters are highly thought of in the wide field of intercultural communication and their presentations were all informative and thought provoking. It was interesting to hear views from such a diverse range of backgrounds. In particular, hearing how different elements of the arts can be used to convey cultures was most enlightening.

Final thoughts:

The conference has given me some exciting new approaches to use in Chinese Culture workshops. It has also made me even more determined to develop my skills in calligraphy.