Author: Artomity Magazine

Kader Attia

Heroes Heridos / Lehmann Maupin / Hong Kong / Nov 1 – Dec 22 / By Diana d’Arenberg Parmanand / It is perhaps fitting that French-born Algerian artist Kader Attia is based in Berlin, a city of scars. A city where the ruins of a wall that once divided it are still visible; a city in which the atrocities committed during wars and by two repressive regimes are memorialised; where the architecture of communism and fascism stand side by side, sometimes pockmarked with bullet holes. It is a city where the scars are on display so that you are in constant confrontation with history and memory, and never able to forget the past.  And so it is with Attia’s work. Working across diverse media and forms – photography, film, collage, sculpture, drawing and installation – the artist has built up a two-decade career defined by rigorous research. Through his work he critiques power and hierarchical structures by examining the scars, trauma and injury inflicted by colonial and imperial powers on non-western cultures. Exploring the relationship between non-western cultures and western thought, he regularly …

Celebrating the Inclusive Power of the Arts

By Samson Wong Kei Shun The policy report Celebrating the Inclusive Power of the Arts, released by the Our Hong Kong Foundation (OHKF) this March, is hamstrung by its own reductive view of inclusion and the power of art. Its failure to accurately define its own terms of engagement means that it is condemned to reach over-restrictive, unhelpful conclusions. OHKF is a high-profile, outspoken supporter of government policies. Its recent report Re-imagining Hong Kong with a Game-Changer: Enhanced East Lantau Metropolis was released at an event officiated by its chairperson, Hong Kong’s first chief executive and now a vice-chairman of mainland China’s CPPCC, Tung Chee-hwa. Similarly, media coverage of the launch of Celebrating the Inclusive Power of the Arts was bolstered by prominent speakers including Bernard Chan, convenor of Hong Kong government’s Executive Council; Gwen Kao, chairman of the Charles K Kao Foundation for Alzheimer’s Disease; Adeline Ooi, director Asia of Art Basel; Gavin Glayton of New York’s Arts & Minds; and Richard Ings of Arts Council England. With such influential backing, the report deserves closer scrutiny before its version of arts inclusion takes root …

Outdoor Interactive Exhibition “Home?” by GayBird unveils now!

3-22 January 2019 Central Pier No. 95-9 January 2019 Piazza A, Hong Kong Cultural Centre, Tsim Sha TsuiMid-January 2019  Causeway Bay Taking place at various locations citywide, Home? is GayBird’s follow-up piece to a well-received installation that also premiered at the OzAsia Festival 2017. For the Hong Kong edition of the outdoor, interactive exhibition, GayBird adds a question mark to the end of the word ‘home’, inviting the audience to question the concept of home. Home? is inspired by the Chinese character “家” (home), which is composed of two parts: “宀” representing a roof, and “豕”, a pig. In modern Chinese, “家” can refer to identity, careers, schools of thought and even formal address when combined with other characters. This installation is a literal take on the combination of roof and pig that forms the Chinese character, and a ringing sound is activated upon entering the space which recalls a doorbell. Home? will be exhibited in Central, Tsim Sha Tsui and Causeway Bay. Presented in either a crowded, concentrated or a structured setting, each presentation guides the audience to embrace the sense of space …

Booked: Tai Kwun Contemporary’s Hong Kong Art Book Fair

11–13 January 2019Friday to Sunday Times Friday 11 January 1 – 9 pm Saturday 12 January 11 am – 9 pm Sunday 13 January 11 am – 7 pm VenueJC ContemporaryTai Kwun, 10 Hollywood Road, Central, Hong Kong TicketsHKD$20/per ticket HKD$10/per ticket for children under 18, students and seniorsTicketflap link: https://www.ticketflap.com/booked2019 The inaugural Booked: Tai Kwun Contemporary’s Hong Kong Art Book Fair brings together over 60 art book publishers, artists and exhibitors from Hong Kong, the region and the world for the first time, to share their work in publishing and art through the medium of books. The art book fair takes place from 11 to 13 January 2019 within the JC Contemporary building, designed by Herzog & de Meuron and situated within Tai Kwun, the restored Central Police Station compound in the heart of Central, Hong Kong. As a landmark revitalisation project, Tai Kwun has welcomed well over one million visitors since opening in May 2018. As an annual three-day event, Booked aspires to create a platform for art book publishers and artists to display their range of works, from photography books, art albums, art historical and theoretical texts, …

GayBird

By Sarah Karacs Electronic composer turned multimedia artist Leung Kei-Chuek, aka GayBird, is in possession of two racks of vintage synthesisers, each as curious and complex as the next, and each containing its own unique functionality, its own language and a poetry of its own. His favourite is the EMS Synthi AKS, a vintage machine with colourful dials that was made in the UK in 1971, before he was born. “Because the technology is old, the electronics are not very stable,” says GayBird, describing how a sound he makes one day cannot be replicated the next. “The machine is already changed. Even if it’s on the same setting, has the same diameter and everything is the same, the sound is always changing.” GayBird’s workspace in his studio overlooking Chai Wan harbour is one of order, without frills or fuss. Barring a dark sphere placed near the opening of the apartment, the synthesisers are what draw the visitor’s eye in their vibrant, boxy strangeness, like the remnants of an old Star Trek set. He likes to …

Jin Meyerson

Before the Beginning and After the End By Katherine Volk Before the Beginning and After the End at Pearl Lam Galleries is a culmination of what Jin Meyerson describes as his “greatest hits and misses”, comparable to a rock star compiling their chart toppers alongside little-known B-sides. Spanning seven years, they contain hints at his accumulated perspective and the defining experiences of his evolution as an artist. Meyerson was born in Incheon, South Korea, and spent his first years in an orphanage. At the age of five he was adopted by a Jewish-Swedish family and raised in Minnesota. His upbringing was just the start of his multicultural experience; as he jokes, “I was multicultural before the term was invented”. First moving to New York, then Paris, then setting up a studio in Hong Kong and moving back to South Korea, Meyerson’s narrative transcends borders and speaks to a universal viewpoint. He has a relationship with images, aesthetically psychedelic but digitally sourced, that “always comes from multiple points of entry – and it has to, otherwise I feel like …

Gordon Cheung

By Remo Notarianni It is hard to think of Gordon Cheung’s worlds as homes. But his landscapes, often mountainous, vast and empty, yet shimmering and abundant with flowers, might begin to look eerily familiar as technology blurs our reality and modernity transforms or even erases our living spaces. Home at Galerie Huit is a body of mixed-media paintings and sculptures that raises questions about the meaning of a domicile: a place of birth, a residence, a source of heritage or identity, or a land that is conquered by an empire. Cheung reflects on his personal story as a Brit born to Chinese immigrants who left Hong Kong, a place that many fondly consider home despite its political turmoil. He sees this as part of a volatile global situation that has created complex individuals who live in an in-between space, caught between rapidly changing layers of history that define, at least temporarily, as they confuse identities. His work asks what we are becoming as our societies change, and what we could become if they disappeared. “This …

M+ Matters | Keynote: Building Louvre Abu Dhabi

December 7, 2018, 6.30pm Jockey Club Hall, Asia Society Hong Kong Center (9 Justice Drive, Admiralty, Hong Kong) http://www.westkowloon.hk In this lecture organised by M+, Manuel Rabaté, Director of Louvre Abu Dhabi, discusses the building of this twenty-first-century encyclopedic museum as ‘a museum of experimentation, and a museum of meeting points’. Louvre Abu Dhabi opened in November 2017 following a decade of planning and construction. It is the result of a collegial effort between France and the United Arab Emirates to create a visionary museum that inherits the tradition of the French institution while embracing the multicultural dynamics of the Arab world. This aspiration pervades the Jean Nouvel–designed building, which features a low-slung dome that evokes the architecture of a mosque and a mausoleum. The dome is pierced with openings and resembles interwoven palm leaves assembled into a lattice, proposing a contemporary reading of a traditional form. At the core of the museum’s mission is the notion of universal human values, which is enacted through collecting and programming activities that bridge the Louvre’s long history …

Yuk King Tan and Tobias Berger

Artist Yuk King Tan and her husband, head of art at Tai Kwun Tobias Berger, talk about three of their favourite pieces in their collection. All of the art work we have tells stories about countries that we live in, our friends and our shared history. Some of the work makes the audience reconsider its belief structures, opening up different ways of contemplating the world. Art is such a unique and challenging form of communication. It’s important to have pieces that inform the way we work and also shift how we perceive our surroundings and community. Three really interesting, intelligent artists in Hong Kong right now are Ho Sin Tung, Nadim Abbas and Leung Chi Wo. Ho Sin Tung has a lyrical, idiosyncratic illustrative style that uses a sociological perspective to examine the way memory, aesthetics, literature and filmscapes can create and mythologise a changing territory like Hong Kong. Her drawing style, with maps and seating plans, uses a muted colour palette and distorted viewpoints to make work that is suggestive, beautiful and often quietly subversive. Your Name is Ferdinand (2010) is a delicate pencil and …

Robin Moyer

My China (1976 – Present) Pékin Fine Arts Hong Kong Jun 23 – Oct 1, 2018 Valencia Tong Upon entering the gallery, it is as though the viewer has stepped into a time capsule. The black-and-white photos of various sizes, some framed and some unframed, are the work of award-winning photojournalist Robin Moyer from a career spanning over five decades in Asia. They showcase the transformations of mainland China and Hong Kong from 1976 to the present day. Steps at #24 Caine Road Hong Kong features a strong diagonal composition, with an advertisement printed at the side of the stone steps. The ad for Two Girls, a cosmetics brand with which generations of Hong Kong citizens have been familiar, evokes a sense of nostalgia. Bicycles is a snapshot of the daily life of ordinary citizens in mainland China in the 1980s, featuring what for a long time was China’s most popular mode of transport. The crowd in the foreground is juxtaposed against uneven shadows in the background cast by trees, adding to the depth of the image. This photograph not …