Director Zhang Yimou on His New Film

In his latest film, "Under the Hawthorn Tree," Chinese director Zhang Yimou explores a story of young love in 1970s rural China. The movie, which opened the prestigious Pusan International Film Festival last week, features fresh-faced actors with no box-office track record.

When Chinese Realism Met European Abstraction

Long tear-shaped white forms—representing bitter gourds commonly used in Chinese cuisine—stand out against a background of impassioned dark-green brushstrokes. The late Chinese artist Wu Guanzhong called his 1998 work "Bitter Melon Homestead," and wrote: "This is blood. This is destiny … Bitter melons are not so bitter, since … I have fully tasted the bitterest of the bitterest."

The Rise of China's Own Spielberg

As a director, Feng has become a strong draw on his own—an anomaly in Chinese entertainment, where movie stars usually make or break a film. Since his 1994 debut film, "Gone Forever With My Love", he has made a dozen movies, each one shattering a record in China.

Color and Sparkle Help Brighten the Mood

Just in time to help beat back the global financial blues, style trendsetters are serving up some of the brightest ideas seen in years. At the recent New York Fashion Week, Marc Jacobs said, "What?

Homegrown Luxe

Asia's elite have fueled the growth of Western high-end brands. Now, they are creating their own.

Beethoven Goes Digital

Classical music is making money again, thanks largely to online downloads. It's a great example of how the 'long tail' theory is changing an industry.

Beethoven Goes Digital

Classical music is making money again, thanks largely to online downloads. It's a great example of how the 'long tail' theory is changing an industry.

Water Shortages: Investment Opportunities?

The new oil may be water. According to Global Water Intelligence, a U.K. consultancy, by December total assets under management in water funds could hit a record $20 billion this year, a 53 percent increase from 12 months earlier.

Jaycee Chan (Jackie's Son) Finds His Rhythm

Jaycee Chan was filled with apprehension. He was in a hotel room trying to film a love scene for his new movie, "The Drummer," and it wasn't going smoothly. "'Wah, with 50 people staring, how can I do the job right?' " he recalls thinking.

A Rare Look at 'China's Mona Lisa'

Even among the stuffy bureaucrats in Beijing, the Song dynasty ink-on-silk painting "Along the River During the Qingming Festival" has an affectionate nickname: "China's Mona Lisa." Though it's a landscape, not a portrait, "Qingming" has a mysterious allure that has captivated the popular imagination and spawned debate about its hidden meaning, much like da Vinci's fabled work.

The Maestro of Mood

William Chang Suk-ping is a man of few words. The Hong Kong film-industry icon rarely gives interviews and is not keen on talking theory. But his images say plenty.

Picture Change

For some creative minds, climate change represents not impending gloom but opportunity—a chance to imagine a world reshaped by warming, to rethink the way they work by using green methods and materials.

CHINA: CASINO CRISIS

This winter the region around Yanji, on the Chinese border with North Korea, had a predictable ebb and flow: desperate North Korean refugees escaped into China; cash-flush Chinese crossed into North Korea to gamble.

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