Crossing The Line: Marcel Dzama’s Hong Kong-Inspired Imagery

Why We Recommend it

Horse-racing leaflets, 1960s and 70s dance magazines and lyrics from Hong Kong singer Margaret Lee’s 1960s album covers found their way into works by Canadian artist Marcel Dzama.




Marcel Dzama (b. 1974) is renowned for his unique visual language that investigates human action and motivation, as well as the blurred relationship between the real and the subconscious. Dzama’s works visualises childhood fantasies and otherworldly fairy tales, which are inspired by both folk vernacular and art-historical and contemporary influences such as pop culture.

Crossing the Line features drawings, dioramas, and a film inspired by the artist’s recent trip to Hong Kong. Dzama combines elements from the theatre and carnival with those of warfare and conflict in order to create discombobulating works that are as playful as they are dark.

Dzama experiments with composition and plays with meaning through the incorporation of texts in different languages in his works, such as lyrics from Hong Kong singer Margaret Lee’s 1960s album covers and Taiwanese singer Yao Su Rong that the artist discovered during his travels.

Image: Crossing the line (cropped), 2018, © Marcel Dzama, Courtesy the artist and David Zwirner


When: 22 Jan 2019 - 9 Mar 2019 Where: David Zwirner, 5–6/F, H Queen’s – 80 Queen’s Road Central – Central