Filmmaker J.P. Sniadecki: Screening of THE IRON MINISTRY 铁道 and Post Realism Seminar #12

Public Screening and Discussion with filmmaker J.P. SNIADECKI Monday April 11,2016  7 PM, Communications 150 / Studio C

co-sponsored by Porter College, Film + Digital Media, the Arts Dean’s Fund for Excellence, Anthropology, and the Center for Emerging Worlds

Filmed over three years on China’s railways, THE IRON MINISTRY (2014, 83 min.) traces the vast interiors of a country on the move: flesh and metal, clangs and squeals, light and dark, language and gesture. Scores of rail journeys come together into one, capturing the thrills and anxieties of social and technological transformation. THE IRON MINISTRY immerses audiences in fleeting relationships and uneasy encounters between humans and machines on what will soon be the world’s largest railway network.

Screening followed by Discussion with J.P. Sniadecki


Embodied Camera / Embodied Image
Thursday April 14, 2016, 4-7 PM | Communications 139

Seminar participants will explore practical dimensions of embodied camerawork, questions of embodiment in film, phenomenology, the cinema of encounter, art, and ethnography. Advance registration required: contact Irene Lusztig ( to reserve a place in the seminar.


J.P. Sniadecki is a filmmaker and anthropologist active in the United States and China. An affiliate of the Sensory Ethnography Lab, he holds a PhD in Social Anthropology with Media from Harvard. His films have screened at festivals such as the Berlinale, Locarno, New York, AFI, Edinburgh, Rotterdam, San Francisco, Viennale, Vancouver, BAFICI, RIDM, Cinema du Reel, Riviera Maya, FICUNAM, and DOChina as well as at venues such as New York’s MoMA and Guggenheim, Vienna’s MAC, Beijing’s UCCA, the 2014 Shanghai Biennale, and the 2014 Whitney Biennale. His films include Chaiqian/Demolition (2010), winner of the Joris Ivens Award; Foreign Parts (2010), winner of two Leopards at Locarno and named Best Film at the Punto de Vista Film Festival and DocsBarcelona; People’s Park (2012), named Best Anthropological Film at Festival dei Popoli; and Yumen (2013), named Best Experimental Film and Best Chinese Film at the Taiwan International Documentary Film Festival. Sniadecki’s latest feature, The Iron Ministry (2014), was A.O. Scott’s “Critics Pick” in the New York Times and has screened widely and garnered jury prizes at the Ann Arbor Film Festival and the Valdivia and Camden International Film Festivals. Coorganizer of the traveling film series “Cinema on the Edge” which showcases independent cinema from China, he has written articles and interviews for
Cinema Scope and contributed essays to Visual Anthropology Review and the edited volume DV-Made China (Hawaii University Press). He is Assistant Professor of radio / television / film in the School of Communication at Northwestern University.

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