LOOK/17: Launch Weekend Events

With just a few days left until the festival opens, here’s a reminder of the events and opportunities around China and Urbanism to get involved in this coming weekend.


Thursday 6 April

The launch commences with an afternoon of talks by international artists chaired by Ying Kwok; festival curator for LOOK/17, followed by openings at Museum of Liverpool and Open Eye Gallery.

3.00pm – 4.00pm: Artist Talks at Open Eye Gallery
Ying Kwok will be joined by participating artists from Hong Kong including: Luke Ching, Lau Chi Chung, South Ho and Wobik Wong. Each artist will be invited to talk about their work in the context of urbanism, followed by discussion and Q&A. Free, book a place jacob@openeye.org.uk or 0151 242 1131

5.00pm – 7.00pm: Museum of Liverpool opening
5:30pm: WeChat video project at Museum of Liverpool
Join us for the launch of New Generation: Global Citizen; a project by University of Liverpool students. Through the medium of WeChat the students and their friends have created one minute-films reflecting urban life in Liverpool and China from a taxi ride in Taipei to culinary delights in Liverpool. Follow our WeChat subscription page for information on the film makers – LOOKphotofest or check out our YouTube channel for a teaser.

6.00pm – 8.00pm: Open Eye Gallery with speeches from 6.30pm including Lawrence George Giles (Chair of board LOOK International Photography Festival), Denise Fahmy (Arts Council), Claire McColgan (Culture Liverpool Director, Liverpool City Council), and Allan Walker (Dean of School of Arts and Media, University of Salford).

9.00pm – Late: After Party at Constellations
Launch celebrations continue with live music at 35-39 Greenland Street, Liverpool, L1 0BS. This is an opportunity to view work by Fringe Artists some of whom are exhibiting at Constellations. The full fringe programme is available to pick up at the festival hub

lake man 001

UK/China Cultural Exchange

Fri 7 April – Fri 14 April
10.00am – 4.00pm
Tate Exchange at Tate Liverpool

This is the first of two programmes for LOOK/17 (Liverpool International Photography Festival) where we explore urbanism and exchange through the universality of photography.

Throughout the week we are joined by John van Aitken & Jane Brake from the Institute of Urban Dreaming (IUD) – Their Temporary Research Space is installed in the Tate Exchange space for the public to engage and interact with. Join IUD to explore a collection of photographs, books, articles and videos, about the dispossessions and displacements behind the visual drama of China’s hyper urbanization



Haze and Fog Film Screening

Sat 8 April
2.30pm – 3.30pm
Tate Exchange, Tate Liverpool

Description: Introductory talk followed by a screening of Haze and Fog. 2013. China. Directed by Cao Fei. In Mandarin; English subtitles. 47 min. Beijing-based artist and filmmaker Cao Fei mixes pop aesthetics, fantasy, and surrealistic references with documentary and social commentary to reflect on China’s rapidly changing economy and how it transforms the everyday lives and imaginations of its citizens. The film will be introduced by Steph Fletcher (Assistant Curator) from the University of Salford Art Collection.


Open Cities

Open Cities

7th April – 14th May
Open Eye Gallery

Open Cities is an interactive piece of music by photographer and musician Benjamin McDonnell. As the participant walks around a short loop of Albert Dock, eight compositions, each based on the dimensions of colonial buildings on a corresponding route in Hong Kong are played. The music disrupts and punctures, revealing the city in a new way.

To experience Open Cities please download the free app Echoes xyzwhich is available for IOS and Android phones. Once the app is open, load the project Open Cities, this should be the first in the list of projects. Follow the map and walk around Albert Dock in any direction you wish, the different sounds will play as you change location. Headphones are recommended for the best experience.

UK/China Cultural Exchange Lab

Fri 7 April 
11.00am – 3.00pm
Leggate Theatre, Victoria Gallery & Museum
The lab will explore and discuss current and developing practices of cultural exchange between the UK and China. It is a forum to discuss how we can develop collaborations or networks to strengthen UK and China Exchange. We have an exciting line up of speakers from RIBA North to British Council, and FACT.


Here/There/Now: Housing in Chinese and UK Cities

Sat 8 April 
11.00am – 1.30pm
Tate Exchange, Tate Liverpool

This is the first of two sessions where Institute of Urban Dreaming will host round table discussions, drawing on a network of researchers to unpack the dynamics and representation of the Chinese city.

WORKERS 工人 – Artist Talk by Helen Couchman

Sun 9 April
2.00pm – 3.00pm
Tate Exchange, Tate Liverpool

Description: In this artist talk, Helen Couchman will talk about the Workers  Project from 2007 when she photographed a large group of Chinese workers  engaged in construction work in preparation for the 2008 Olympic Games in  Beijing. The end result was a set of 143 portraits, a copy of which was presented  to each worker

Wang Zijun from the WORKERS series. Beijing, China. 2007. copyright Helen Couchman


For more information on the events and how to book, please visit the website:



Images credits (in order)

  1. Courtesy Derek Man
  2. Courtesy IUD
  3. Courtesy Clement Chan
  4. Courtesy Benjamin McDonnell
  5. Courtesy Derek Man
  6. Wang Zijun from the WORKERS series. Beijing, China. 2007. copyright Helen Couchman

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