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30 May - 02 Jun

Asian Avant-Garde Film Festival

By Lily Valette 10 May 2024

Event Information

START DATE 30 May 2024
END DATE 02 Jun 2024
M+, 38 Museum Drive, West Kowloon Cultural District

Header images courtesy of M+ and National Asian Culture Centre

M+ is launching the inaugural edition of the Asian Avant-Garde Film Festival this May, an event supported by Chanel. From 30 May to 2 June, a multitude of screenings, exhibitions, workshops, panel talks with key players in the industry, and live performances revolving around Asian independent art filmmaking will be hosted at the modern museum located in the West Kowloon Cultural District.

Avant-garde is an experimental genre, one that steers away from customary filmmaking and therefore becomes fertile ground for alternative storytelling. This first edition will focus on the history of Asian avant-garde filmmaking, and how artists from the region have been rewriting historical narratives through their work. M+ named Wing Shya as the art director of the festival, a Hong Kong photographer renowned for his work on Wong Kar-wai films.

Many artists and topics are encompassed in the line-up. Opening night will be marked by the “Phantom Frequencies: An Audiovisual Experience by Wing Shya x Nnscya” live cinema performance. Connoisseurs can look forward to meeting Zhang Peili, a pioneer in Chinese video art who has displayed his work at the Museum of Modern Art, the Guggenheim Museum in New York, and the Venice Biennale, as well as Nick Deocampo, a Filipino filmmaker and film historian presenting a film programme and lecture under the theme “Slivers of Desire,” focused on corporeality. 

The “Fearless & Fierce: The Female Gaze” programme tackles the conditions of women in Asia with nine films dating from the 1970s to 2017, while “Secrets and Lies” explores the history of Asia during the Cold War, as well as the role of Hong Kong in the region at the time. No quick overview will do justice to the festival’s packed schedule—check out the full programme online, with happenings at the Grand Stair, the M+ Cinema House 1, the Horizon Terrace, and the Festival Lounge space.

Nnscya. Photo: M+

Additionally, there will be an immersive experience and party held at the M+ Horizon Terrace on 31 May. Named “Amorphous Bodies: A Happening,” the party welcomes the artists and DJs of Möth Agency and a performance by filmmakers Jennie MaryTai Liu and Simon Liu accompanied by musician Andrew Gilbert.

You can purchase a festival pass to enjoy the full experience of Asian Avant-Garde Film Festival, as it gives access to all programmes. Individual tickets to each programme are also available for purchase, and screenings happening at the Grand Stair are free for all to drop-in. All festival pass and standard ticket holders aged 18 and over are automatically granted access to the “Amorphous Bodies” party. Find out more here.

Lily Valette


Born and raised in the French countryside, Lily arrived in Hong Kong looking for an adventure. Passionate about books, she spent some time in Parisian publishing houses and is the author of an illustrated book about hair. Life in Hong Kong for her entails looking for seaside places to eat and a lot of hiking.