Local academic elected to council of regional audiovisual group

Jiing Yng-ruey, a professor in the Graduate Institute of Studies in Documentary and Film Archiving at Tainan National University of the Arts in southern Taiwan, was elected to the executive council of the Southeast Asia-Pacific Audiovisual Archive Association April 7 in Manila, the Philippines.

The professor was appointed to a three-year term during the association's six-day annual council meeting that wrapped up April 8. He attended the event, along with his team from TNNUA, to present an address on his efforts in developing community-based audiovisual archives.

Following his election as a member of SEAPAVAA's executive council, Jiing was invited to visit Thailand in the near future to share his archiving and restoration expertise with the Thai government's Public Relations Department.

A noted scholar in his field, Jiing has dedicated his career to preserving historically significant films, building archives and repairing old and damaged audiovisual materials. He is a former director of today's Taiwan Film Institute, a foundation under the Ministry of Culture with an archive of more than 17,500 Mandarin-language films.

While serving as dean of TNNUA's College of Sound and Image Arts from 2004 to 2008 and again from 2010 to 2012, Jiing helped establish a professional-level audiovisual archiving and digital restoration team at the Tainan university. The group works to source and restore documentaries and news footage produced in Taiwan.

In 2013, this team rediscovered and restored a copy of the 1956 Taiwan film Xue Pinggui and Wang Baochuan. Long believed lost, this was the first adaption in local languages including Holo and Hakka of the classical Chinese tale of Xue and Wang, a love story set against the backdrop of war in ancient China's Tang dynasty (618-907).

Jiing received the Outstanding Contribution Award at the 2014 Taipei Film Festival for his efforts to conserve and promote Taiwan's cinematic history.

SEAPAVAA traces its origins to a conference on audiovisual and film retrieval, restoration and archiving staged in the Philippines under the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in 1993. Formally launched in 1996, the Manila-based association brings together organizations and individuals involved in archiving in Southeast Asia and the Pacific with the goal of preserving audiovisual heritage for future generations. Member groups take turns hosting the body's annual council meetings.

In 2015, Jiing's team at TNNUA became the first local group to join the association, participating under the name the Taiwan Newsreel and Documentary Film Archive, TNNUA.

Source: Taiwan Today