Shanghai gets Frexh

Source:Global Times Published: 2010-8-6 9:15:00

The Frexh crew. Photo: Courtesy of Paperdoll

By Tom Mangione

Tonight at 8pm at Mao Livehouse marks the launch of Frexh, a two-day event combining music, fashion, food and art. The name Frexh, pronounced "Fresh," is meant to evoke the Chinese word for fresh, xinxian. Organized by Brian Yang, host of the recent ICS television show Shanghai Rush, the project began as a simple idea to bring the New York-based band, Paperdoll, to Shanghai, but grew into a two-day extravaganza. Kelly Lee of the Boxing Cat Brewery and Cantina Agave fame joined the team, bringing a slew of local restaurants into the mix, including Noodle Bull, Madison and Azul.

Yang also attributes his inspiration for the event to his experiences on Shanghai Rush: "The show whisked us to lots of places all over Shanghai. It really opened my eyes to what was happening beyond the average restaurant and bar in the French Concession. However, Yang hopes the event will be more than just a mouthpiece for Shanghai's burgeoning creative industries. A portion of the proceeds from the event will go to an organization called Wokai, which connects China's rural poor with small loans from donors world-wide.

Tonight's first event, combining fashion and music, will be headlined by the self-proclaimed nerd rock outfit, Paperdoll. When asked what it means to be a nerd, lead singer Teresa Lee told the Global Times: "It means that you really get into something regardless of what other people think about it. That's the way we approach our music; as long as we like it, we're happy." The band hopes to wow audiences by performing several of their songs in Chinese. Lee said: "It's something the band has been talking about for a while. My mom thought it was a good idea. She translated it into (Mandarin) Chinese for me. The band will be joined by multi-faceted Kelly Cha, an author, actress and singer whose work spans the Pacific region, as well as local DJs Haha, Levi Lyman and Cavia.

Tomorrow's event at 5 on the Bund starts at 7pm and will feature food and a display of art works from local and international artists including Phat Huynh, Hsuan-Ying Chen, Pan Fan, Zareen Khan, Zhou Hao and Monique Lai. Of particular note are Khan's abstract paintings created through a combination of different liquids - especially spirits such as gin and vodka - and Chen's surreal paintings and prints of urban landscapes. As well, on her first visit to Shanghai, Lai will be displaying works from her most recent show, rêvant des revolution. Born in Jamaica, Lai describes her work as "a journey," recently moving from Brooklyn, New York to Hong Kong. Despite her work's focus on numerous locations, Lai says: "for me it is not really the destination, but sometimes the people you meet along the way that become an important part of my journey."




Posted in: Metro Shanghai

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