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An Artist's Journey from China to America (2021)

The true story through BiLan Liao's artwork. She came to America at her age 45 to have the freedom to paint her and her family journey under the dictator Mao Zedong. She also painted her life in America.

Completed On: 31 Mar, 2021

Duration: 44 min 13 sec

Genres: Documentary, Short

Country: United States

Director: BiLan Liao

Submitted By: BILAN LIAO

An Artist's Journey from China to America Poster
The true story through BiLan Liao's artwork. She came to America at her age 45 to have the freedom to paint her and her family journey under the dictator Mao Zedong. She also painted her life in America.
  • Directors
    BiLan Liao
  • Producers
    BiLan Liao
  • Writers
    BiLan Liao
  • Film Type
    Documentary, Short
  • Genres
    Educational, Drama
  • Runtime
    44 minutes 13 seconds
  • Completion Date
    31 Mar, 2021
  • Production Budget
    50000 USD
  • Country of Origin
    United States
  • Country of Filming
    United States
  • Film Language
    English
  • Shooting Format
  • Aspect Ratio
  • Film Color
    Color
  • Student Project
    No
  • First-time Filmmaker
    Yes

Director's Biography

BiLan Liao is a first-time filmmaker, retired art professor, and author of the book "Diary of the Dragon’s Daughter”.

She was born and raised in China. She and her family experienced much discrimination and many hardships under the dictator Mao Zedong. While still in China, in 1999 she was granted U.S. permanent residency as an “Alien of Extraordinary Abilities.” At age forty-five, she realized her dream when she came to America.

BiLan earned two master’s degrees in art (MA and MFA), studied art in Italy, and became an art college professor in Kentucky, where she built the BiLan Liao Gallery. She has been featured in these news programs: Chicago Movie Magzine, ABC Night line, AJC, Supper China, The world China, Morning Blend (ABC), WSIU (PBS), National Public Radio…and exhibit her art work in national and international at galleries and museums. Website: www.bilanliao.com

Director's Statement

The creative vision creates the true story of me and my family’s perseverance living through the dark and terrifying days of the Mao government. My artwork expresses themes of hope, courage, women’s rights, freedom and the American Dream. I explore the relationship of my personal story, Chinese history, and fine art in this project "An Artist’s Journey from China to America."

I believe audiences can learn from this film about Chinese culture, history and my life in America, which is especially relevant today because of the hate crimes against Asians and other people of color.

This film is using my artwork, photos and my book to tell my stories. My husband, Ken and I did the narration in this film.

If the audience are a fan of history, culture, art, or tales of human perseverance, she/he you will absolutely love this film.

Anyone who are interested in art, history, and immigrant’s life. Also, for diversity and inclusion programs to reduce discrimination against women and minorities. Specially for college, high and middle school students as an educational film on culture, history reference and encourage young never give up their dream.

My story is touching, inspiring, and at times heart-breaking, the film provides insight into the lives of Chinese immigrates. and especially relevant today, during a time when many Chinese immigrants are being viewed with such negativity.

I want people to know no matter what your background is, we all have a story that can be change from pain into love when people see my film. The story has an uplifting spirit and positive attitude, and I want people to learn from my experience and not repeat such terrible mistakes again. My greatest hope is that we always remember to Never Give Up Your Dream.

It is my personal journey from China to America.
I came to from China to America when I was 45 years old to have the freedom to paint the true story about what happened to me and my family.

As an artist I express what I experienced and suffered by painting away some of my deepest feelings, thoughts and nightmares. My paintings are dramatic and courageous. I also painted the story about my life in America.

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Trailer
Photos
  • An Artist's Journey from China to America_1
  • An Artist's Journey from China to America_2
  • An Artist's Journey from China to America_3
  • An Artist's Journey from China to America_4
Laurels and Certificates
  • Top Shorts, Best Inspirational Film
  • Best Women Short
  • Asian Documentary Short
  • Best Short Documentray
  • Finalist, Best Short Women's Issue
Project Links