In his book ‘BOMB: A Manifesto of Art Terrorism,’ Raymond Salvatore Harmon wrote that “Art is an evolutionary act. The shape of art and its role in society is constantly changing. At no point is art static. There are no rules.” August is shaping up to be a month full of groundbreaking art events and exhibits that reflect this sentiment exactly. From street art to sing-offs, you’re bound to be inspired by this month’s lineup.
Featuring colourful installations from five international artists, ART IS PLAY invites visitors to embark on a journey of awakening, self-discovery and social interaction and get in touch with their inner child. Each room of the exhibit flows to the next new discovery, and each work just as Insta-worthy.
The exhibit opens with “Mindscape” by Macau native Cindy Ng. Currently based in Beijing, she evokes memories of her childhood in Macau and highlights the unique use of ink in her work, layering curtains and lights to create an abstract dreamscape.
Brush through the haze and you’ll then find Japanese artist Ayumi Adachi’s “Setsuna = 0.013 second”. A setsuna is the Japanese word for “split second”, and that’s exactly how long it’ll take for your consciousness to awaken in this room. The calming sounds and meticulous bubbles of this installation will bring you into deep contemplation. Local artist, tomtom’s orange-scented “Orangelicious” will give you a shock to the system with its vibrant orange and yellow balloons, the biggest reaching almost 6 feet. The artist aims to inspire joy in visitors as they bask in the summery glow of the room. No time to relax though, as London-based French artist Camille Walala has made a lively mirror maze to get lost in. Rounding off the exhibit is the boundary-pushing Sugar Garden made by MGM Cotai’s celebrity chef Janice Wong, filled with 20,000 sugar flowers hand painted with glowing UV paint.
We know this isn’t technically in Hong Kong, but we promise it’s worth the ferry ride over.
When: Wednesday, 27 June – Sunday, 9 September; 10:30am – 10pm daily; closed on 16 July and 13 August
Where: MGM Art Space, MGM MACAU Level 2, Avenida Dr. Sun Yat Sen, Nape, Macau
How much: MOP$120
Curated by local graffiti lover and collector Eric Wong and presented by L+, Lucie Chang Fine Arts’ young affiliate, KILLED OR BE KILLED showcases 15 canvases and rare works from renowned street artists, WANTO and NECKFACE.
Representing the West, NECKFACE hails from New York and is known for his devilish graphics and light hearted humour; representing the East, WANTO and his bubbly “W” tag reside in Tokyo and is known for establishing the multinational crew “246” with members from Japan, Mexico, Taiwan and the US. The two artists will also be taking over the exhibition space, using it as a blank canvas for new works, while their movements are protected by a commercial space. There’s also a cheeky claw machine with exclusively designed prizes to be won! A truly evolutionary experience for the urban phenomenon that is street art.
When: Friday 13 July – Friday 31 August; 10am – 7pm daily
Where: Lucie Chang Fine Arts, 26 Tai Ping Shan Street, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong
How much: Free admission.
Following the success of Op and Kinetic Art master, Carlos Cruz-Diez’s first solo Asia show last year, Puerto Roja has partnered up with the iconic Parisian Galerie Denise René to present ‘Movement‘, an exhibition celebrating Op and Kinetic Art and other contemporaries of the genre.
The title pays tribute to Denise René’s revolutionary 1955 exhibition, “Le Mouvement”, and the works feature optical illusions and geometric patterns that invite the viewer to not only observe but also to participate in the art. A piece to especially look out for is Jesús Rafael Soto’s ‘El Ovalo Escarlata’, his signature construction with perpetually moving rods that create ‘vibrations’ that connect to its environment. Breaking free from the limits of traditional painting, we highly recommend even those unfamiliar with the genre to check out Movement.
When: Thursday, 10 May – Wednesday, 22 August; 11am-7pm; closed on Mondays
Where: Puerto Roja, Shop 3, 1/F SOHO 189, 189 Queen’s Road West, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong
How much: Free admission.
Prominent Vietnamese-American artist, Tuan Andrew Nguyen explores the relationships between mythology, worship, animal extinction, human consumption and political protest in his first solo exhibition in Hong Kong, My Ailing Beliefs Can Cure Your Wretched Desires.
The exhibition is simplistic, featuring just six works of a range of mediums, but packs a mean punch. The namesake piece is a film installation told through the eyes of the last Javan rhino that was poached in 2010, dissecting the relationship between Vietnam’s mythology, politics and ecosystem. Rhinos remain a recurring motif throughout the other works, including a rhino skull sculpture and a LED shop sign displaying a conversation between mythical and endangered Vietnamese animals. The subject matter may be complex, but the stories told through this body of work are beautiful and thought-provoking.
When: Thursday, 28 June – Tuesday, 28 August; 10am – 6pm; Closed on Sundays
Where: 10 Chancery Lane Gallery, G/F, 10 Chancery Lane, Central, Hong Kong
How much: Free admission
Local artist, Stephen Wong is an avid hiker and nature lover, and his paintings reflect his deep fascination with Hong Kong’s breathtaking landscapes. Wong reinvents the natural sceneries that he loves into dreamscapes. Instead of taking photographs, he documents his hikes with pencil and watercolour sketches (not unlike a 19th century European landscape painter) then reimagines the terrain from his sketches and memory into his works such as “The Dragon’s Back”, which spans over nine canvas panels. The exhibition also includes his series “The Study of the Sky Every Day”, a collection of 365 small-format acrylic paintings. Wong devoted a whole year to capturing the sky and its changing cloud formations, finishing one painting per day. Not only does Wong capture sceneries, but he also captures the ever-changing human emotion.
When: Saturday 28 July – Saturday 25 August; 11am – 6pm; closed on Sundays and Mondays
Where: Gallery EXIT, 3/F, 25 Hing Wo Street, Tin Wan, Aberdeen, Hong Kong
How much: Free admission
Have a dispute needing some entertaining resolution? Bring it to Karaoke Court. Karaoke Court is a work of performance art by former solicitor-in-training, Jack Tan. Based on the Inuit tradition of the “song duel”, litigants present their disputes by singing in front of a live audience acting as jury.
Karaoke Court reflects on community conflict and cohesion, and the integral role of presentation and performance in social and legal judgment. Contact the Clerk of Karaoke Court at email@example.com to discuss your dispute and how a sing-off can resolve it. You and your partner will both sign an arbitration agreement consenting to the Karaoke Court method of resolving your dispute, and the Clerk of Karaoke Court will then help you prepare for your presentation with advice on song choice and singing.
When: Wednesday, 22 August; 6:30pm – 10pm
Where: Duddell’s, Level 3, Shanghai Tang Mansion, 1 Duddell Street, Central, Hong Kong
How much: Free to apply. General admission $300, buy your tickets here!