Having the chance to catch the last day (27th July 2015) of the exhibition A / AN “ “ – Bachelor of Arts (Fine Art) Graduation Exhibition 2015 held at the Hong Kong Arts Centre, I was completely amazed to see the enormous creativity and talent of the students.
I couldn’t help sharing in here my experience. The exhibition was co-presented by The Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology University (RMIT) and The Hong Kong Art School. There were total 36 graduating students participating in this exhibition. The artworks reflect the dedication, personal ideology and unique concepts across the modalities of Painting, Photography and Sculpture.
Incompleteness and unlimited possibilities
On the first glance, the title A/AN “ “ appeared unexplainable and ambiguous. Along the visit, I got to know more about its meaning. The blank “ “ actually hinted at the notion of “incompleteness and unlimited possibilities” inherent in both the artworks and the emerging artists. On one hand, it denoted the dilemma faced by most artists – When is a work of art finished? Is it ever finished? Does it need to be “complete”? On the other hand, it allowed the viewers to have their own interpretations on the artworks.
From Left 1 & 2: The artist tried to capture the tiniest changes; slowest pace and the most fragile growth within the objects. Those traces left by time and life. By using a set of layered images, she tried to reflect the ambience that she experienced.
From left 3: The 3 pieces are respectively My Wanchai, My Central and My Causeway Bay. As an introvert observer, the artist recorded the conversations of passers-by on the street. The work investigates the ‘urban tension’ between oneself and the surrounding and shows the alienation between people living in the community.
From left 4: The artist found a cross point and a connection between her grandmother, her mother and her when she discovered that her mother had also helped her grandmother to pick up useful stuffs from the junkyard to home in the past.
Imagination is an intrinsic underlying element with which the viewers could interpret the artworks in a certain direction, or it could be towards no direction. The “ “ was left blank in order to let the viewers fill in their own meanings. There could be infinite possibilities, unstrained imagination or suggestions. The exhibition enhances our self-awareness towards our surroundings.
Art is dead?
In the art history, the saying “art is dead” appeared at several critical turns in the artistic genres. For instance, the emerge of abstraction which worked to counteract the figuration has ignited the debate on the criteria of aesthetics. In the eighties Postmodernism era, the saying “painting is dead” was aroused when large numbers of artists turned their works to installation, video art etc. In Hong Kong, it has been said for long that “art is dying” especially when we see that the industry is giving way to the urbanisation and commercial activities. Nevertheless, when I looked into the creativity of these emerging artists, I was fueled with positivity. Over three years, the graduating students’ enthusiasm in arts has been frequently confronted with the complicated hard work, and yet they have made it! This exhibition is not the end but the starting point of another art journey ahead, for the students and the future art scene of Hong Kong.
(The exhibition was ended on 27th July 2015)