Author: Artomity Magazine

Lee Kit

Something You Can’t Leave Behind By Charlotte Chang The introduction to Lee Kit’s first solo show with Massimo De Carlo Hong Kong, Something You Can’t Leave Behind, opens with a lengthy quote containing sentence fragments and abrupt imperatives that is at once baffling and transcendent. After a series of disjointed declarative statements – such as “there is a movie in every corner”, “a bus ride might make you smile” and “our time has gone” – Lee commands viewers to “mute the voiceover”, before ending by saying “something you can’t leave behind”, the show’s titular reference to elusive and ineffable but persistent traces of life and memory. The intimate narrative of the show, composed of eight site-specific works with complex combinations of projections and Lee’s characteristic mixed-media paintings and drawings, is as much a stream of consciousness as the quote. While the show’s “something” seems intertwined with Lee’s individual consciousness, manifest in ghostly imprints of mundane objects, disembodied gestures and idiosyncratic expletives, the multifarious interplay between tangibility and intangibility, light and shadow, sharpness and blurriness, and contrasting scales brings out something more universal: that, in myriad ways, …

Richard Streitmatter-Tran, Le Pho, Le Quang Tinh, Le Thi Luu, Luong Xuan Nhi, Mai Trung Thu, Nguyen Gia Tri, Nguyen Hong Linh, Nguyen Phan Chanh, To Ngoc Van, Trinh Van, Vu Cao Dam, Evaristo Jonchère, Victor Tardieu

May 26 – Jul 8 Opening: Friday May 26, 5 – 8pm de Sarthe Gallery and Art Agenda, S.E.A. is pleased to announce DEPARTURES: Intersecting Vietnamese Modern Art with R. Streitmatter-Tran, an exhibition of contemporary and modern Vietnamese art that tracks the flow of artists and ideas between Vietnam and the West over the last century. In the show, major new work by the preeminent Ho Chi Minh City-based contemporary artist Richard Streitmatter-Tran intersects with a collection of forty modern masterpieces by artists central to the story of modern Vietnamese Art from the pre and post-war era. The exhibition marks the first time that a number of significant modern masterpieces from Vietnam will be showcased together in Hong Kong, as well as Streitmatter-Tran’s first major solo presentation in the city. Working across a range of mediums including watercolor on silk, unfired clay, sound, iron and cake, Streitmatter-Tran initiates dialogue that offers new perspectives on historically significant work from Vietnam’s first generation of modern artists.   20/F Global Trade Square, No. 21 Wong Chuk Hang Road T (852)2167 …

Markus Brunetti

Jun 8 – Aug 26 Opening: Thursday, Jun 8, 6-8pm Markus Brunetti and his partner Betty Schöner have been documenting facades of Cathedrals part-by-part in Europe since 2005. The separated elements are then assembled digitally into a coherent whole. Unit D, 15/F Entertainment Building 30 Queen’s Road, Central T (852)2503 2220 Email Web Tu-Sa 11am – 7pm As a strong supporter of Zero and Gutai art movements from its inception, the gallery’s vision has gradually evolved into contemporary art with a special interest in the concept of the void, the process of the creation and in the questioning of the experience of space and time. In May 2014, Axel Vervoordt Gallery expanded to Hong Kong and opened its first overseas exhibition venue in the city’s central district. El Anatsui created new work for this occasion. By having a physical presence in Hong Kong, Axel Vervoordt Gallery will continue to bridge artistic expressions between the East and the West.

Talk on Hong Kong participation at the 57th Venice Biennale, Samson Young: Songs for Disaster Relief

To accompany Hong Kong’s collateral event at the Venice Biennale 2017, Samson Young: Songs for Disaster Relief, M+ and the Hong Kong Arts Development Council are co-hosting a series of talks in Hong Kong. Taking Young’s artistic practice and diverse influences as a starting point, the series offers a deeper understanding of key concepts in contemporary art and provides a wider context for Young’s newly commissioned work in Venice. Songs for Disaster Relief is conceived of as an album unfolding in space to be experienced in person. The series includes four key pieces, each of which tells a new story referencing the cultural and political context of iconic 80s charity songs. Through a deliberate repurposing and creative misreading of such iconic songs, Young presents an exploration of the troubling ideologies and genuine affective qualities that these songs and their aspirations embody. In the first talk in our series, Guest Curator Ying Kwok shares her experience of taking Songs for Disaster Relief from concept to realisation in Venice. She is joined by Anthony Leung Po-shan, one of the contributors to the exhibition …

Trevor Yeung

The Darkroom That Is Not Dark Magician Space Beijing Dec 17, 2016 – Feb 26, 2017 Nooshfar Afnan Trevor Yeung has explored voyeurism since his earliest works, such as the Sleepy Bed series, in which he took photographs, without permission, of sleeping hostel roommates. But in his solo show he no longer focuses on photographic images of voyeuristic subjects; instead, fleeting glances immediately blur the lines between who is watching whom, as the audience uses an L-shaped, mirror-clad locker room at the entrance of the show. Artist Studio Party (2012), a digital projection work, continues this theme. Faced with the image of a couple embracing, audience members might feel they are intruding on an intimate moment, as did the artist when he took the photo, causing them to quickly move along the hall, past the image and into the next room. The work touches on the key Yeung theme of audience control, and throughout the show the audience is manipulated in its movement through the exhibition space, stopping, slowing down and kneeling, and is sometimes also manipulated …

Gerard d’Alton Henderson

A Total Embrace By Alexandra A Seno In the autumn of 1963, a new luxury hotel opened in the heart of Hong Kong’s Central district. The 27-floor Mandarin Oriental boasted state-of-the-art amenities such as the city’s first phone system that allowed guests to make direct calls to outside numbers, and switchboard operators to activate an in-room light informing occupants of missed calls. Befitting such a cosmopolitan operation, the hotel’s owners chose an artist based in Spain to create the property’s most prominent features. A rising star with a growing international following, he was of European and Chinese descent, and seemed to have just the right style for the large, dramatic murals in the lobby and the Mandarin Grill restaurant, as well as mosaics for the rooftop swimming pool area. This is how most of Hong Kong was first introduced to Gerard d’Alton Henderson. In the final two decades of British rule, Henderson — who was born in Malaysia and grew up in Singapore — was the artist to know in the Crown Colony. The best households had to …

Matjaž Tančič

3DPRK  Pékin Fine Arts Hong Kong Nov 19, 2016 – Jan 31, 2017 Elliat Albrecht Apparently some North Korean officials harbour a fondness for 3D photography. That, at least, is the explanation given for Slovenian photographer Matjaž Tančič gaining access to the notoriously secretive, restrictive country in 2014 to take stereoscopic photographs of its citizens — images that were recently displayed in the exhibition 3DPRK at Pékin Fine Arts in Wong Chuk Hang. Tančič obtained permission through a contact to take photographs for a temporary exhibition in Pyongyang, which later travelled to Pékin Fine Arts in Beijing and then to Hong Kong. The photographs, which include images of waitresses, shop clerks, factory workers, athletes, nurses and farmers, were shown in the gallery alongside a video documenting Tančič’s 10-day trip. He was accompanied by two local guides as he documented ordinary people in restaurants, hospitals, laboratories, factories and “children’s palaces” – community centres for extracurricular activities. Adhering to a strict, breakneck schedule punctuated with requisite museum visits, Tančič managed to capture some captivating, albeit highly structured and …

Fabien Merelle

Étreindre Edouard Malingue Gallery Hong Kong Dec 9, 2016 – Jan 14, 2017 Caroline Ha Thuc The setting for this exhibition, of 10 ink and watercolour drawings and three sculptures by French artist Fabien Mérelle, is very sober, and there is enough empty space between each piece to get the imagination working. The drawings are meticulous, while the pale pink sculptures made from acrylic resin look pretty rough. Yet an unlikely balance and an interesting dialogue lend harmony to the whole gallery, dominated by a feeling of floating and emptiness. Étreindre, the title of the exhibition, means to embrace warmly. It also means to hold someone so tightly that there is precisely no space in between. The title comes from a drawing, at the end of the exhibition, of two almost nude men holding each other tightly. They are actually the models for the three sculptures, which represent them in a fragmented way, scattered all over the space: the legs to begin with, then the torsos and finally the heads, all life-size empty moulds. There is a strong …

Luis Chan

Jazz with Luis By Winnie Lai A marriage between impeccable technical skills and confident spontaneity, jazz is a fitting musical analogy for Luis Chan’s fantasy world of colours and imagination, and provides the title of the veteran Hong Kong painter’s two-part retrospective at Hanart TZ Gallery, Jazz with Luis. It is divided into Landscape Fantasy, which opened on February 17, followed by Urban Figures on March 10. With a focus on his landscape paintings, Landscape Fantasy presents Chan’s works from the late 1950s to the late 70s, showing how he dealt with the subject in different media, and following the metamorphosis of his style from his early realist sketches to the iconic stylised works for which he is best known. The exhibition also features a detailed timeline and video interviews with the curator, scholars, and friends and the daughter of the artist. It paints a vivid picture of the fun, playful, passionate, carefree Chan, and illustrates the multifaceted impact he made to Hong Kong as an artist, writer, critic and cultural promoter and organiser.   Hong Kong became Chan’s home …

Hi! Houses A rejuvenation of Hong Kong heritage

In Hong Kong many heritage buildings have been destroyed or neglected, and the government has only had a heritage-preservation policy since very recently. Its Art Promotion Office invited four Hong Kong artists to revitalise four centuries-old houses in different corners of the territory, using art as a subtle but powerful tool to link the past with the present and revive collective memory. The exhibitions recall in particular the Hakka heritage of Hong Kong, the commercial prosperity of the city during the 19th century and its role during the overthrow of the Qing Dynasty through the figure of Sun Yat-sen. All the heritage buildings connect Hong Kong with the history of China from different perspectives, at a time when the question of identity is particularly strongly contested. The artists’ research involved meeting descendants of the clans, neighbours, guards and village elders, in order to collect micro-histories, which they mixed with their own stories and historical events. They thus became storytellers, weaving fiction and reality to transform archives, empty walls and facts into vivid contemporary experiences. The cultural heritage consists not …