[Meeting Intellectuals in the Spring Hills] Review丨Tim Yip:Inspiration for the New-Orientalism Aesthetics

The 13th Lecture of the Meeting the Intellectuals in the Spring Hills Lecture Series

Inspiration for the New-Orientalism Aesthetics





On November 10, world renowned visual artist, film and stage art director and costume designer, Mr. Tim Yip, gave us 2018's last but one of the best lectures at the "Meeting the Intellectuals in the Spring Hills" Lecture Series, revealing the modern spirit of the "New-Orientalism Aesthetics".


Rowing a boat of stories gently down the river of his life journey, we were exposed to what he explored and how he grew up in the pursuit of art.


Ms. Dorothy Wong, Director of University Planning and Coordination Office and Administrative Services Office presented a custom made souvenir to Mr. Tim Yip


Those stories which were interesting but true acquainted us with the concept of New-Orientalism Aesthetics. It is a common understanding that oriental beauty equals to tradition, which has tight bonds with the past and a long impact on the present. In his words, New-Orientalism evidently confirms the notion of embracing both tradition and modernity, and makes an effort to find the true meaning and the value of existence to bring together eastern classics and western culture.


After his talk, many members of the audience bought autographed copies of Tim Yip's book: The Creative Aesthetics of Tim Yip: Manifold


Remarkably, he shared about his perception and understanding on "New-Orientalism Aesthetics": "Leave the heavy burden, set the aesthetics free, let it be in no control nor disturbed; we just settle down and see, to feel all the goodness inside." It is indeed the "probing mode" which has combined modernity and the oriental aesthetics.


At the 13th lecture of the Meeting the Intellectuals in the Spring Hills Lecture Series, amazed by the ingenious idea of "New-Orientalism Aesthetics", we are now looking out through a unique window to a new world, opened by Mr. Tim Yip.



Guest profile


Since working on his first film A Better Tomorrow directed by John Woo in 1986, Tim Yip has accomplished costume designs and art direction for many film and theatrical performances over the past two decades. In addition to Woo, Tim has collaborated with other film directors of international acclaim such as Ang Lee, Tsai Ming Liang, Tian Zhuangzhuang, Li Shaohong, Stanley Kwan, Chen Kuo-fu, Chen Kaige, and Feng Xiaogang. His striking costume design and art direction for feature films Red Cliff, The Banquet, 1942, The Message, The Promise, Spring in a Small Town, Temptation of a Monk and Double Vision and television drama Palace of Desires, Dreams of the Red Chamber, Oranges Turn Ripe and Marco Polo produced by NETFLIX have further attracted worldwide attention to his work. From 2017, Tim Yip has been serving as the art director and costume designer of the film Fengshen Trilogy. Its first episode is expected to be released in 2020.


In the field of stage art, Tim Yip has cooperated with many renowned artists and theatrical groups such as Robert Wilson, Franco Dragone, Zhang Yimou, Lai Shengchuan, Yang Liping, Cloud Gate Dance Theatre, Contemporary Legend Theatre, Han Tang Yue-fu Dance Ensemble, Tai-Gu Tales Dance Theatre, and U Theatre. His stage productions included Loulan Girl, The Night Revels of Han Xizai, the Palace of Eternal Life, A Dream Like A Dream, Peacock, House of Flying Daggers played in San Fransisco Opera House, Sadler’s Wells Theatre, Joyce Theatre, Palais de Chaillot, Opera-Comique, Paris, Opernhaus Graz, Beijing National Theatre, Taipei Palace Museum and other theatres. He took part in many international art festivals like Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Avignon Dramatic Art Festiva, Biennale de la danse Lyon and so on. In 2004, Tim Yip designed the overall visual including costume and choreography for the ‘8 Minutes of China’ in the closing ceremony of the Athene Olympics. In 2010, Tim Yip worked with the famous choreographer and dancer, Akram Khan and served as visual designer for  the opera DESH, which won the Beth Award and the British Lawrence Oliver Award. Later, they cooperated again in the opera Until the Lions. In 2016, in cooperation with the British National Ballet, a new ballet "Giselle" was launched. In September 2016, the English opera "Dreams of the Red Chamber ", composed by Sheng Zongliang, directed performed by Lai Shengchuan and art directed by Tim Yip, had its worldwide premier at the San Francisco Opera House and had its Asian premier at the "Hong Kong Arts Festival" in March 2017. His creative footprints include China, Austria, France, the United States, the United Kingdom, Spain, Japan and Israel. In 2018, following the "Peacock" and " House of Flying Daggers ", Tim Yip worked with Yang Liping for three times as the artistic director of the "Spring Festival" by the Shadley Wells Theatre in London, England and the Shanghai Art Festival.


Since 2002, Tim Yip has held exhibitions at the National Palace Museum in Taipei, the Bourges Cultural House in France, the Royal Dutch Theatre, the Madrid Cultural Center in Spain, and the Kennedy Art Center in the United States. His works featured the New York International Asian Art Fair. He has held solo exhibitions at the Today Art Museum in Beijing, the Taipei Contemporary Art Center, the Beijing Three Shadows Art Center, and the Singapore Esplanade. In 2015, the art short film "Kitchen" directed by Tim Yip won the "Best Art Direction Award" at the 8th ASVOFF International Fashion Video Art Film Festival held at the Centre Pompidou, Paris, France. In March 2016, the “PARALLEL” Tim Yip personal art exhibition was held at the Amiens Cultural Center in France. In September 2016, the “Tim Yip: Manifold” art exhibition was held at the Shanghai Museum of Contemporary Art (PSA).


Tim Yip has successively cooperated with world leading commercial brands such as M.A.C and Chow Tai Fook. In 2010, Tim Yip and the clothing installation he created participated in Dior's 60th Anniversary Exhibition Dior and Chinese Artists, which was exhibited at the Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (UCCA) in Beijing. In the same year, Tim Yip was also the artistic director of the Italian furniture design exhibition “Timeless Time”, which was an important artistic installation event of Italy at the Shanghai World Expo. In 2016, commissioned by the Taiwan VOUGE magazine and CHANEL, Tim Yip made a short film "Looking for Chanel" featuring Kwai Lun-Mei. In September of the same year, he was invited by SWAROVSKI to create a “Golden” gothic dress with 100,000 Swarovski crystals, which was exhibited at the “Tim Yip: Manifold” art exhibition. In June 2017, Tim Yip specially designed a medium-sized PEEKABOO handbag “Spring Blossom Winter Snow” for the FENDI CHINA PEEKABOO PROJECT, a charity project initiated by the famous Italian fashion brand FENDI. In July 2017, Tim Yip once again joined hands with CHANEL to direct the art short film "A Record of Love" starring Zhou Xun and Hu Ge for the newly-launched VOGUE Film magazine. In December of the same year, invited by the Modern Communication Group, Tim Yip served as a creative, screenwriter and director, and together with artists such as U Drum, Zhu Zheqin, Qi Jizhen and Wu Man, staged a multimedia stage play.


In addition to art creation, Tim Yip has also been committed to the literary creations for years with collections that are published around the world in Chinese, English and French etc. Publications include the "Uncertain Time", "Big Fire", "Flowers", "Flower White", "Meral", "ROUGE-L'ART DE TIM YIP, "GIJÓN", "Silence • Illusion", "Red Cliff: Tim Yip's Art Notes" and "Spiritual Thoughts and Strange Paths" and "Spiritual Actions and Strange Paths", etc. His latest book is "Manifold: Tim Yip's Creative Aesthetics".



Meeting the Intellectuals in the Spring Hills” is one of the University's lecture series where the University will invite social elites in such fields as culture and arts to share with our students in form of salon or lecture to promote a discussion of thought-provoking issues or soul-searching experiences. During the lectures, everyone will have a chance to listen and respond on their world views, their aspirations, and intellectual taste in life.



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