yellow bankThe Yellow Bank (2010) by J. P. Sniadecki, video, China/United States

“On July 22, 2009, a total solar eclipse darkened the skies over Shanghai. Rather than focus on the eclipse itself, I wanted to explore its effect on the built environment, offering a meditation on the possible tones and meanings generated in the meeting of this celestial phenomena and Shanghai, where I had lived, worked, and learned to speak Mandarin nine years prior. That morning, just before the eclipse, the megalopolis was cloaked in foreboding storm clouds. The camera traverses back and forth across the waters of the Huangpu River – the major artery that separates the city’s two banks of old Puxi and new Pudong, an architectural vision of China’s present moment and a possible global future. Darkness descends, things slow down, boats stop, and the Pudong’s skyline is cast in thick black. Even so, Shanghai does not come to a complete halt – light from office windows and advertisements for the approaching World Expo pierce the darkness.” – Sniadecki