2023 archive
Unsettled States

This collection of animated work from East Asia is about humans, animals and spirits in the process of transmutation, caught between one state of being and another. From ancient folk tales to techno-futurist dreamscapes, the films in this programme question notions of identity, gender, queerness and nationality, imagining worlds in which everything is fluid, where spheres of existence continually blend and blur. 'Unsettled States' is presented by Queer East, a UK festival that showcases queer cinema from East and Southeast Asia and its diaspora communities.

Curated by: Yi Wang

Delivery Dancers Sphere
Delivery Dancers Sphere #

2023 / South Korea / 25 min

In a techno-futurist Seoul, Ernst Mo works for the courier service Delivery Dancer. Every day, she transports an endless stream of parcels, following algorithmically generated routes. But when she comes across an alternative version of herself, her reality slowly begins to crack.

Director: Ayoung Kim

Garisani #

2022 / South Korea / 8 min

Traversing the underworld, a new-born baby god plots to escape his destiny, and commences a journey fraught with danger.

Director: Jin Woo

I Am a Horse
I Am a Horse #

2023 / South Korea, Denmark / 8 min

In this feminist rendering of a Korean birth dream, the director, unable to find a female presence in the artwork of the Korean artist Lee Jung-seob, unravels an imaginative tale of women born with bodies that are half-horse, half-tiger.

Director: Chaerin Im

Kaleidoscope #

2019 / UK / 4 min

Kaleidoscope explores a future world in which advances in gene-editing and organ transplantation have redefined human evolution, leading to a reimagining of hybridity, queerness, and the obsolescence of technology.

Director: Wei Zhang

Lotus Lantern
Lotus Lantern #

2017 / US, China / 6 min

Exploring the links between the filmmaker’s queer identity and his Chinese heritage, Lotus Lantern is a tribute to the iconic Chinese singer and actress Zhou Xuan.

Director: Calvin Xingpei Shen

Compound Eyes of Tropical
Compound Eyes of Tropical #

2022 / Taiwan / 17 min

Adapted from the Malay folk tale 'The Mouse Deer Crosses the River', this film adopts the fractured perspective of a fly’s compound eyes, taking the audience on a journey that incorporates interlinked narratives from different cultures, reflecting on the connections between local and allegorical experiences. Inspired by Taiwan’s unique traditional funeral rituals, the film uses stop-motion to animate hand-crafted paper figures.

Director: Zhang Xu Zhan