Two Hong Kong Artists Turn Typhoons into Art of Destruction
Why We Recommend it
Dual solo exhibitions Liquefied Sunshine and Force Majeure by local artists Ching Chin Wai and South Ho Siu Nam constructs a comparative study of past and recent typhoons that hit the city and socio-political failures in modern Hong Kong.
As an annual recurrence in the city, typhoon is an integral part of Hongkongers’ shared memories and a formative force in the city’s collective psyche. Artists Luke Ching Chin Wai and South Ho Siu Nam present works made in 2014 and 2018, which correspond to the two major civil uprisings of their home city.
In Liquefied Sunshine, Ching visualises natural and artificial weather phenomena in Hong Kong and Taiwan, emphasising the correlating realities between the two regions, where major forces, be they meteorological or political, happen in different temporal successions. Through unexpected interventions, such as defaced postcards and artificial rain brought by water trucks, Ching traces a thoughtful pathway to expose our faulty imagination of ideal civic institutions and cityscapes.
In Force Majeure, Ho showcases his most recent photographic series, Whiteness of Trees (2018). The series follows his movement in the aftermath of Super Typhoon Mangkhut (2018), the strongest tropical cyclone to make landfall in Hong Kong since 1980s. In addition to widespread flooding and riotous destruction, tens of thousands of trees were uprooted and mutilated, their mangled trunks and branches blocking roads and passageways. Ho traversed the transformed city, capturing the fresh wounds on these violently traumatised bodies, against the backdrop of an unmovable concrete metropolis eager to go back to normal. The artist reveals the fragility and resilience of the individual in face of unspeakable violence.