Contemporary by Angela Li pleased to present The Call of the Green, ajoint exhibition curated by EricShiu-kee Leung. A novel entitled The Call of the Wildwas published in 1903 by American author Jack London, which tells a story of a dog named Buckgoingthrough sufferingsand ultimately returnedto the wild. The desire to be freeand the longing to return to the wildis simply part of animals’nature.Humans feel the call of nature even more so now because our lives havebeenturned upside down in the epidemic; wehope to freeourselves from all kinds of restraints by getting closerto mother earth.Contemporary byAngelaLiinviteseight artists to participate in the exhibition,whose worksfocus on the theme of nature,to examineurbanisationand explore human connections with the natural world. The Call of the Greenis on view from June3 –July4, 2020.
Robert O’Brien was born in the UK in 1939andhas settled in Cheung Chau forthe last 44 years since hismove to Hong Kong. He is fascinated by the tranquillity of this outlying island and enjoys painting outdoors. His worksnot only celebrate the beauty of nature, but also explore the complex interrelationship between the land and human experience. With an academic background in Theatre Design, O’Brien’s paintings often contain interactive elements and movable components. Three of his landscape oil paintings in the formof windowsare included in the exhibition; the movable side panelscreateinteresting visual and interactive experiences, bringing viewers througha recollection of the magnificent scenery of Cheung Chau through different time in history.
Cho Yeou Juiis a well-respected artist from Taiwan and has residedin Hong Kong since 2005. She is best knownfor her poetic photorealismpaintingsof landscapesin the 70’s. In recent years,characteristics of Chinese painting can be seen in the artist’s oeuvre; traces ofvividwaterstainsand mesmerising reflection of lights and shadows create captivating yetillusionary visual impressions.This exhibition showcases Cho’s SpinningSeries, this series evokesa sense of sentimentality especially under the current circumstance.
Hong Kong born mid-career artist Alex Kin Fung Heungspecializes in richly colouredpaintingsof animals and landscapesthat explore the balance and conflict between nature, lifeand the city. A painting entitled The Double Life of Birdstells a story of two birds encounteringone another on Siu A Chau, facing the crossroad to decidebetween nature and the citythatpotentiallyleads to polarising destinies.
Born in the 80’s, plein air landscapes is the essence of Stephen Chun Hei Wong’s paintings. Wong’s paintingsare his personal visual diary, documenting his love for the nature and his visual experience throughout his hikes in Hong Kong.In one of the worksin the exhibitionThePainter by the Cliff, Wong painted himself in the background, ponderingthe meaning of individual existence from another point of view.
Emerging young artist Wong Yan Yan enjoys overlapping cityscapes andher imaginarydimensions in her brilliantlycoloured paintings. A caged hummingbird that is depicted in a painting titled Sim Cityis a metaphor of the desire for nature.
Japan-based Macau artist Season Sin Hang Lao is a multidisciplinary artist who strives to present his photographic works in the style of Chinese ink art. Lotusesin the exhibition is a photographyworkthat retains the appearance and harmony of an ink painting, achieved through the printing on handmade paper with ink-like tone. The composition of broken lotuses further adopts the principles of Eastern philosophyas Lao celebrates all things in nature with simplicity throughthe technique ofleaving blank (liu bai) in the work.
The Call of the Green also showcases three-dimensional worksin the exhibition. Hong Kong artistTenme Sze Fong Kwan is a graduate ofthe Chinese Painting Department ofBeijing’sCentral Academy of Fine Arts. In recent years,Kwanfocuses onexploringtherelationships between urban and nature through the use ofconcrete as hermedium.She casts home grown harvestssuch as fruits andvegetablesinto cement sculpturesinanurban farm besideher rooftop studio, alternating organic life and construction materials within a concrete jungle and investigating the co-existence of nature and city.This exhibition includes sculptures of string beans, potatoes and gourds, turning normal fruits and vegetables into contemporary art with a hint of the feeling of ink art.
Local mixed media artist Jaffa LaamLam is well known for her wood carved sculptures.She creates woodenbranch-like sculptures with the assemblage of recycled wood, giving recycled materialssecond lives. This exhibition showcases one new and one previous works of Lam.Pillow Halo, produced in 2013,is a recollection of her intimate conversation with the late sculptor Hin Yeung Mak in her dream. The new work entitled Equal = Unequalis a continuation of their virtual conversation as the artist carries ontheir fictitious conversationonHong Kong. Two pale white florescent tubesresemblingthe sign of ‘=’ rest on black painted wood branches,symbolisingtheincreasinglyblurringof truth andlies,and the rightand wrong. All works in thisexhibition reflect on the relationship between man and nature across diverse mediums, allowingviewers to escape from the current restlessness and reflects onfundamentalissues that impact us as humans.