Unknown Ritual No.1 -- film

Category: experimental film

Length: 34’49”/80'

Production company: Tan Tan Studio

Concept: Tan Tan

Director: Tan Tan

Performer: Li Ning, Zhang Mengqi, Bi Haiyan, He Chengyun, Zhu Linan, Tan Tan, Eric Bribosia

Music/Sound: Eric Bribosia, Tan Tan

Editor: Tan Tan

Photographer: Tan Tan, Li Biao

Still Photographer: Tan Tan, Xie Xihe, Li Zixuan, Fan Peipei, He Chengyun, Li Jiazheng

Sound Engineer: Tang Jia, Eric Bribosia

Assistant: Li Zixuan

Production year: 2017


  • 35min version, Qingdao Independent Film Festival 2017, Qingdao, December
  • Some parts of the film along with photographs and installations were exhibited at a solo exhibition at Le Clignoteur, Brussels, Belgium, January 2017
  • Urban Nomadism: 2017 Hangzhou Liangzhu Big Roof International Moving Image Exhibition, December
  • Premiere at a cinema: Qingdao Independent Film Festival 2017, Qingdao, December


  • The 1st edition trailer was selected by artistic Cable TV station SFE TV (Souvenirs from Earth Television), Germany, April 2016
  • The 35 min version film was collected by Li Xianting Film Fund, China, September 2017

This is an "intermedia film", as it combines a fiction film, a documentary film, and several site-specific performance art works. It mixes fiction and reality, script and improvisation, art and ritual.

The “ritual” begins with a wedding of a mixed couple (Western and Chinese) in a “fake church”.  Suddenly the bride disappears, then the groom begins to look for her anxiously. Soon, he finds himself trapped in one after another labyrinth, where he meets some mysterious people, animals, and spirits…

All these happened in Wuhan, a typical big city of China. Tan Tan chose three special spaces as the stages of the ritual performances, which divide the film into three sections. “The man’s world”: a crowded shopping area called “European style streets”, which consisted of “Italy Style Street”, “spain Style Street”, “Germany Style Street”,etc. Therein, a church-like wedding photo studio is the main stage. “The hell”: several unfinished rooms and underground spaces inside the luxury shopping malls, which look like creepy garbage fields or haunted ruins. “The heaven”: an abandoned “mini world park” by a big lake, contains many artificial famous historical sites like pyramids, castles, Greek and Roman temples, all are being covered by the vegetation and time.

By accident, Tan Tan discovered these real-and-surreal places in her hometown, then she invited 6 other artists to have a trip of “urban rituals”, which dedicated to the lost memory and faith…

"The heaven" Space——

 “The man’s world” Space——

"The hell" Space——