Yujiapu by Karl Lemieux & BJ Nilsen

During the winter of 2015, Karl Lemieux travelled to China with BJ Nilsen and a small camera crew to make a piece about the country’s infamous ghost cities. The resulting film is made with images shot in the city of Yujiapu, near Tianjin, where ancestral fishing villages have been destroyed to make way for a multibillion-dollar real estate project that was to become the new financial district of the area. The entire city was developed but never finished and has been left uninhabited for over six years. Yujiapu uses the lines and frames both of the buildings and of the film strip to create abstract elements that slowly reveal an incredible desolate urban landscape. Harvested from the same locations, the film’s soundtrack by BJ Nilsen is composed of digitally manipulated field recordings, creating abstract soundscapes that merge fittingly with the image.