THE CONCRETE REVOLUTION
a cameraman and a sound engineer at her side, the Chinese writer and filmmaker Xiaolu Guo walks through Beijing. She shows how the old China is rapidly crumbling away, how house after house is demolished to make room for the new China, which is put up in concrete. The official website of the capital warns tourists not to trust old city maps, because the city changes every day. Of course it does: of the twelve million people who live here, one million are construction workers. The favourite hangout of Xiaolu and her crew is the largest construction site in the city, where the preparations for the 2008 Olympic Games are well under way. The construction workers work long hours and still have three months pay outstanding, but they only admit this when the foreman is not around. China still has one foot in the old system, but uses the other to step outside.
When I was 15, a most depressing age for me, my first poem was published. Since then I’ve always believed poetry can do something great for life. I am not talking about literary poetry, but having a poetic attitude to deal with life especially when it is brutal or hard going. The poetry helps you to go through it.
Through novel writing and film making, I try to discover how someone who has always felt like an outsider reveals the truth of human existence in a chaotic reality. I find the distance between our inner worlds and the outside world can be so far. Humanity cries for love and emotional touch. Art seems to warm and strengthen the human soul.
Shamelessly honest, sharp, poetic and feminine. That’s the starting point for my work.