CinÉast participates in Design City LX Festival with a screening of Flying Monks Temple, in which director Žanete Skarule tells the story of a unique architectural project enabling Shaolin monks to fly.

A dreamer by nature, Chinese businessman Quanqi Zhu decided to set up a unique installation on the hillside of the sacred Songshan Mountain in China, part of a mountain range in the Henan Province. The mountains are home to the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Shaolin Monastery, which is also considered to be the birthplace of Zen Buddhism and Kung-Fu martial arts. Despite the language barrier, Quanqi Zhu’s closest companion is Latvian architect Austris Mailitis. Together, they invite monks from the Shaolin Monastery nearby to participate in flying performances. As construction of the installation began, the creators themselves had to hover between cultural differences, conventions and personal ambitions. Quanqi Zhu wanted to bring the West to China, Austris Mailitis wanted to pay homage to Eastern philosophy. Since then, Shaolin monks fly in the air in the world’s first building constructed for one of the most fundamental of human ambitions: levitation.

Introduction by director Žanete Skarule
Q&A with architect Austris Mailitis

Directed by: Žanete Skarule
Produced by: Uldis Cekulis
Production: Company VFS Films
Supported by: National Film Centre of Latvia, State Culture Capital Foundation
Year: 2017
Duration: 56 min
Language: English

Organisers: CinÉast – central and eastern european film festival and Mudam Luxembourg – Musée d’Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean