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Ambacht in Beeld Festival - binnenkort online programmering

film | The Last Stitch

Dinsdag 10 maart, 18.30 uur - Dinsdag 10 maart
90 minuten
€ 11
Dinsdag 10 maart


Europese première

China/Hong Kong/Canada, 2019, 70 minuten

Alfred Sung

Engels ondertiteld


Dit intieme portret door Alfred Sung neemt ons mee van Shanghai naar Hong Kong en Toronto. De film gaat over een Chinese kleermakersfamilie, migratie en het verdwijnen van traditioneel vakmanschap.


The cheongsam was once the daily attire of all Chinese women, no matter what their size or shape. In the skilled hands of a tailor, even an ordinary piece of fabric could be shaped into a beautiful garment transforming the wearer into an elegant figure. Each button, sleeve, and collar was testament to the accomplishments of these traditional craftsmen.


Shanghai was once the capital of the cheongsam and base of many a master tailor. But during the unstable years of the Communist Revolution, many of these skilled craftsmen fled to Hong Kong. Among those forced to relocate were Master Sung and his family, including his son Tommy. Growing up in the trade, Tommy was apprenticed to his father as soon as he was old enough and learned the skills of the two generations of tailors who had come before him. When his father passed away, Tommy and his wife Connie worked hard to keep the family business going, despite the growth of the mass-produced garment industry.


As many of those who had come of age in a Hong Kong ruled over by the British, Tommy and Connie were greatly worried by the imminent handover of sovereignty to China in 1997. Unwilling to await the economic instability, they decided to emigrate to Canada in 1996. Arriving in a foreign land with their two sons, the couple made good use of their tailoring skills, rebuilding their family business from the ground up. Twenty years on, they are now ready to retire. But what will happen to the traditional skills that have been in their family for three generations? Are their sons interested in this inheritance?


In 2016, Tommy and Connie’s eldest son, Alfred, decided to return to the family home in Toronto from Hong Kong to explore his family’s story and find out what the future holds. It’s a story that takes us from Shanghai to Hong Kong and Toronto, reflecting the history of the Chinese diaspora as well as the rise and fall of traditional craftsmanship.
















Nagesprek met Ting Gong.

Voertaal Engels



Ting Gong (1989, China) relocated to Amsterdam and obtained her Bachelor’s degree at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in 2015. She graduated Cum Laude in the fashion design department. In 2018, she joined Challenging Jellewery, a master’s programme at Sandberg Instituut.


Gong’s practice situates across fashion, performance, and installation art. Her artistic language materialises through clothing-related research and clothes-like objects. As she is making and sharing, she hopes to develop sustainable dialogues, in person and collectively. 


Gong’s works have been shown internationally at Van Abbemuseum, Rijksmuseum, Huis Marseille Museum and Amos Anderson Art Museum. In 2016 Gong held her first solo exhibition ___ that Disappears in Art23 Contemporary Art Gallery in Guangzhou. Her performance piece For The Believers (2018) was debuted at Swatch Art Peace Hotel in Shanghai. Her latest exhibition in Amsterdam, TRANS MOMENT was held at Lugtje gallery in 2019. 


In April 2020, Gong will present her research reenactment Remembering Something Through Tying a Knot at Het Nieuwe Instituut in Rotterdam. 



“I met Yang in the summer of 2019 in the Dong minority ethnic village in Guangxi, China. Yang makes fishnets at her convenience store every day in the village – after she has finished all her household duties. Each fishnet takes 15-20 days to make, she does not make them in any rush. The fishnet goes through 3 pairs of hands, 3 women, 3 families. They are connected by the making hands, the passing of skills, mother and daughter, and a small part of their lifetime.


By making countless knots, each knot brings a cell space, a thread will become a fishnet. It grows and twists, goes with time and silent rhythm, like a tree, like a family. Family, in another case is an invented community: the women I meet with and talk to, work and learn with, say goodbye to but still keep in touch with. My community.


From my experience of pursuing co-dependency, network-building and shared goals in an agreement, I hope to introduce this craft at this special occasion to you. It’s not about the end result, but about the need to produce something with hands, about bringing craft back to the people, and rethink how we portray, use and design our environment.”

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