As the National Day of Persons with Disabilities was approaching, the documentary The Arms of Seven Men directed by Professor Jin Xingzheng of the College of Media and Intercultural Culture was released on May 15 and has been promoted internationally.
The film tells the stories of seven armless artists, namely Chen Weiqiang and Ding Jinghua from Zhejiang, He Zhigang from Yunnan, Zhao Jing from Anhui, Shi Xiaohua from Jiangsu, Wang Xinde from Jilin, and Qu Fanxue from Shandong. They share similar interests as well as misfortune.
In the face of hardships, they thrived with bravery and strength. They devoted themselves to artistic creation such as seal cutting, painting, and calligraphy, which manifested their dignity and confidence. In order to give back to society, the seven men give motivational speeches, sell their works in charity bazaars, and raise funds for new school buildings in an impoverished area in Yunnan.
The documentary film records their real lives in detail, showcasing their confidence, independence, and optimistic attitude towards life. Though mutilated physically, they are, beyond all doubt, intact mentally. Their achievements in arts are not only a representation of the meaning of life but also an invaluable spiritual treasure for the whole society. The film embodies the dream of every person with disabilities and also of the Chinese people.
Director Jin Xingzheng is a researcher of the “Hundred Talents Program” and one of the doctoral advisors at the CMIC. After finishing his studies in Germany in 2015, his goal in filmmaking has been to capture the spirit of the people and the changes of time.