Past screening

Sky Ladder: The Art of Cai Guo-Qiang

Directed by: Kevin Macdonald
Runtime: 1hr 19min Year: 2016
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Details

Directed by: Kevin Macdonald
Runtime: 1hr 19min Year: 2016
Country: United States

Acclaimed filmmaker Kevin Macdonald has unfettered access to world-renowned artist, Cai Guo-Qiang, whose frequent use of gunpowder serves as both an ancestral homage and an acknowledgement of humanity's fleeting nature.

“Even the most art-averse cynic will recognize the blood, sweat and tears that went into creating this strange and beautiful experience.”- Jordan Hoffman, The Guardian

“Like Cai, the doc is a crowd-pleaser which reveals its complexities in a careful viewing.” – David D’Arcy, Screen International

Told through the artist’s own words and those of family, friends and vigilant observers, Sky Ladder: The Art of Cai Guo-Qiang tracks his meteoric rise and examines how and why he engineers artworks that stretch as far as the eye can see and wow millions, such as a six-mile-long gunpowder fuse stemming from the Great Wall into the Gobi Desert or the astounding opening and closing ceremonies of the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics.

With the documentary’s ambitious namesake—a 1,650-foot ladder of fire climbing into the skies above his hometown—the film captures Cai’s work, which unites Eastern philosophy with contemporary social issues. Sky Ladder: The Art of Cai Guo-Qiang is an in-depth portrait of a contemporary creative icon with an ever-present social-political consciousness, a man whose captivating works are visually imposing with implications just as grandiose.