I had the delightful surprise of Zoe Coldham reaching out to me to tell me about the documentary she’d created that goes into the early days of acupuncture finding its way into the mainstream of British culture.

As you probably know, Qiological has been doing a little mini-series on acupuncture’s journey to the west as well. So I was keen to have her on to hear her perspective and what she’s discovered.

Listen in for this documentarian’s perspective on acupuncture’s Journey to the West. 

In This Conversation We Discuss:

  • Zoe’s Journey to the West, Chinese medicine in the western context 
  • The  inspiration in creating the film, unpacking the characteristics of the pioneers of East Asian medicine in the UK 
  • Sibyl Coldham, healthcare systems in the West and the perception of Chinese medicine
  • Big cultural moments in Chinese medicine
  • Michael’s disappointing first experience with visiting an acupuncturist 
  • Zoe’s perception of the acupuncture community
  • Acupuncture in the Mainstream
  • Lifestyle change, the  attraction of Eastern medicine and the influence of The Web That Has No Weaver 
  • The language of Chinese medicine,, opportunities for acupuncturists and the generational challenges 

I'm not a practitioner, but am a seasoned patient. My advice from this side of the coin would be to work together with your practitioner in getting in tune with your body. There is so much wisdom that can be taken from your appointments into your daily life and if you learn to listen your health benefits can hopefully compound as you become more empowered to look after yourself.

Zoe Coldham

Zoe Coldham is an award-winning documentary filmmaker and portrait photographer. She graduated with a Bsa of Film and Television from Swinburne University. Her first short documentary, Charlotte, won Best Documentary at an Academy Awards qualifying event, The St Kilda Film Festival.

In 2018, she worked as a cinematographer on two feature length documentaries which went on to premiere at the Melbourne International Film Festival. After living and working in London for three years, she completed directing her first feature documentary, Journey to the West, which premiered in 2022.

2024 has seen Zoe directing an educational co-design series with Our Watch Australia, amplifying the voices of women and girls with disabilities. She has also received arts grant funding for a historical documentary project, exploring the effects of gentrification on iconic Melbourne suburb, Fitzroy.



Links and Resources

Visit Zoe's website.

You can watch Journey to the West in the US and UK on Amazon Prime, or on Vimeo from all regions of the world.


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