Art Central returns with critically acclaimed and uniquely curated programme of installation and video art

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Art Central returns with critically acclaimed and uniquely curated programme of installation and video art
Angela Yuen, The Dreamer II, 2022. Plastic toys, resin, motor, gear, beads, LED lights, 38 x 34 cm. Courtesy of the artist and Contemporary by Angela Li.

HONG KONG.- Art Central, presented with Lead Partner UOB, is delighted to announce the Fair’s immersive installation art projects alongside an extensive programme of public talks, and video art presented in collaboration with Asia Society Hong Kong Center. As a cornerstone event of Hong Kong Art Week, the Fair’s eighth edition will be held from Wednesday 22 March to Saturday, 25 March 2023 (Preview Tuesday, 21 March) at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, showcasing the next generation of talent from Asia’s most ambitious galleries and artists.

Art Central previously announced its gallery line-up and highlights across three gallery sectors – Central Galleries, Curated Booths, and Solo Presentations, featuring 72 influential galleries from Hong Kong, Asia and beyond.

Differentiated as the incubator of the next generation of contemporary art in Asia, Art Central works with a distinguished Hong Kong-based curator in each edition to identify up-and-coming artists and cutting- edge projects from the region. For its 2023 edition, Art Central has invited independent curator, writer and publisher Chris Wan to curate the popular Yi Tai Sculpture and Installation Projects, the Fair’s sector for ambitious, large-scale installations and spatial interventions.

2023 Yi Tai Sculpture and Installation Projects

This year, Art Central presents four large-scale projects, under the direction of Chris Wan, the Fair’s 2023 Curatorial Advisor. Unified by the non-traditional, transitory and sensory experiences they inspire, the selected projects examine the fluid and elusive nature of art while hinting at a subverted reality that collapses the rigid structures of history, materiality and emotions. Through the intense visual richness and pleasure of “art spectacle”, audiences are invited to question how the social values that have been subliminally pushed to the surface via mass media may displace our understanding of present-day reality.

BAHK Seon-ghi is renowned for his suspended installations that create three-dimensional illusions in space. Specially made for Art Central, the large installation, An Aggregation-Space 2023, doubles as a maze that welcomes the audience to walk through it. Its black charcoal parts float precisely in space to form geometric perspectives at unexpected angles, suggesting an examination of human rationality. Presented by 021gallery, Daegu.

Clara Wong uses comedic visual language and dark humour to discuss frustrations with daily life. Merging vibrant painting techniques and ready-made objects to form a domestic theatre, her installation, Prelude in A minor Trauma, constructs a cramped fictional living space with a leaky water pipe and a computer that inevitably gets wet – a metaphor for the oppressive reality of life in Hong Kong which allows for the exploration of personal traumas and their consequences. Presented by Square Street Gallery, Hong Kong.

In When Memories Metamorphose into What You Imagined, Huo Yun challenges the perception and imagination of paper as a traditional material. The artist's time spent in Italy inspired him to search for a shared, material-based artistic expression in Eastern and Western art. Huo’s sculptural forms evoke a deep sense of history and tradition, as if perceived from a viewer’s long-lost memories. Presented by a|n Gallery, Hong Kong.

In her reflective connections, the Johannesburg-based artist Bev Butkow constructs a dancing installation of locally-sourced materials that reflects on macroeconomic concepts of capital, information and labour. Comprised of four large, fabric-net forms of various suspended shapes, the hand-woven construction suggests a certain rhythm of use, like a set of giant fishing nets just pulled up from the sea. Audiences are drawn to the interplay of Butkow’s abstract soft sculptures, reflective materials and use of light, which invites viewers to explore their myriad details. Presented by Guns & Rain, Johannesburg.

Gok Dou LIVE by Asia Society Hong Kong Center

Art Central 2023 continues its strong relationship with longstanding Education Partner Asia Society Hong Kong Center to present a programme of talks and video art, gathering the art-loving community in Hong Kong and beyond.

Talks and Panel Discussions

A critically acclaimed programme of talks led by prominent voices in contemporary art today. The lineup features artists, curators, collectors, writers, publishers, critics and more. Highlights include:

●Collecting Against the Grain | Tuesday 21 March 2023, 4pm
The art world feeds off social topics, shock value, and trends. We invite art collectors to discuss their journeys in art collecting, and whether their approach to art collecting has shifted.
Speakers: Collectors Sharon Cheng, Vernon Ho, Bonnie Lau
Moderator: Luyang Jiang, Chief Strategy Officer, The Baer Faxt

●Making Your Name: The Trajectory of Contemporary Artists | Thursday 23 March 2023, 2pm. In this talk moderated by one of Hong Kong’s leading academic voices, three contemporary artists share their creative journeys and artistic practices, and what it takes to establish oneself in the art community and beyond.
Speakers: Lindy Lee (artist), Ticko Liu (artist), Glary Wu (artist),
Moderator: Prof. Janet Fong, Research Professor, Academy of Visual Arts, Hong Kong Baptist University

●Looking Forward: Hong Kong as an International Art Hub | Thursday 23 March 2023, 4pm Hong Kong is quickly rebounding as a leading international hub for contemporary art. In this discussion, speakers from distinct creative fields share insights on how the Hong Kong art world is emerging from the pandemic – and what projects and patterns we can look forward to. Speakers: Teresa Kwong, Programme Director, Hong Kong Arts Centre; Sunnie Lau, Director, MIT Hong Kong Innovation Node; Sally Yeung, Curator, Po Leung Kuk Museum
Moderator: Jennifer Pratt, Director, Strategic Partnerships, Artsy

Video Art: Citrus Worlds

Citrus Worlds, a collection of video art projects presented by Asia Society Hong Kong Center, invites us to a refreshment of ten Hong Kong artists’ digital narrations. Encompassing interpretations of absurdity, odes, fairy tales and observations, the artists’ creative visions are emulated in multimedia form. The selected works offer tart reminders of revisiting memories and embracing fantasy, welcoming everyone to dive into a world of digital fun and immersion. Featured artists Herman Chan, Jeff Cheng, Choi Sai Ho, Colbie Fung, Lau Wai, Florence Lee, Masahiro Nakamura, So Siu, Tsui Hou Lam and Winsome Wong. Citrus World Highlights:

●Lau Wai incorporates personal and historical archives, cinematic imagery, popular culture and emerging digital mediums in their witty, multidisciplinary practice. The artist dons a motion capture suit, utilising Deepfake technology and computer-generated imagery to explore the concept of temporality in today’s fast-moving world.

●Tsui Hou Lam examines commodified love, emotions and the female body through the lens of Japanese commercials and mahō shōjo aesthetics. Sharp and prismatic, her works investigate the perversion of reality spearheaded by popular media, as well as their toxic consequences.

●Winsome Wong sees eternity in ephemerality, beauty in decay. She utilises nature and quotidian encounters to illuminate the neglected, little things in life that constitute our contemporary experience. The artist’s works vary between tranquil and colourful, playful and melancholic; highlighting the spectrum of experiences that inform our most intimate memories.

Partner Programme: UOB Art Space and UOB Art Explorer

UOB, the Lead Partner of Art Central, is committed to nurturing artistic talent and fostering greater connectivity within and beyond Hong Kong through art. In their seventh year of collaboration with Art Central, UOB will present an innovative and interactive ink art installation that focuses on sustainability, as well as a talk at the Fair.

●UOB will present the 2022 UOB Art in Ink Awards’ winning artworks and Interwoven: Wired Shanshui, a large-scale installation by Margaret Yeung Kwok Fan at UOB Art Space. Commissioned by UOB, the installation transforms a conventional two-dimensional landscape painting into a three-dimensional shanshui sculpture using recycled copper wires and natural waste wood. The contrasting materials are interwoven in harmony, seeking a hybridity that connects the past, present and future of traditional Chinese aesthetics, whilst highlighting the hopeful progress of sustainability and environmental protection. Yeung also mentored Guo Yin Kam, student winner of the 2022 UOB Art in Ink Awards, to create an interactive installation with digital artwork that will flux and change in response to visitors’ movements.

●With an aim to promote Chinese ink art, UOB will present the debut of UOB Art Explorer at Art Central, providing fair visitors with an opportunity to learn and experience Chinese ink art. Audiences are invited to be inspired by the sculptures and installation by artist Margaret Yeung and the winning artworks of the UOB Art in Ink Awards to create their own Chinese ink artworks through various forms of art creations.

●UOB will also present a talk titled Inner Reflections: New Interpretations of Traditional Ink, to take place on Saturday, 25 March 2023 from 3pm to 4pm. The artistic transformation of classical approaches in Chinese ink art is a theme readily explored by artists, many of whom draw from the historical canon to create unique aesthetics whilst honouring the past. In the talk, four speakers will share their insights into Chinese ink art as it stands today, highlighting the concurrent development of forward-thinking innovations and the humanistic values that the art form continues to uphold. The talk will be conducted in Cantonese.

Speakers: Calvin Hui, Co-founder and Chairman of 3812 Gallery and Founder of Ink Now; Dr Sarah Ng, Curator of the Hong Kong University Museum and Art Gallery; Dr Chloe Suen, Chair of Simon Suen Foundation, Founder of Sun Museum; Dr Margaret Yeung, Contemporary Chinese ink artist Moderator: Zabrina Lo, Feature Editor, Tatler Hong Kong

Christine Ip, CEO – Greater China, UOB, said, “We are pleased to be the Lead Partner of Art Central for the seventh consecutive year, in continuation of our unwavering commitment to fostering Hong Kong’s art scene. With the objectives to nurture local artistic talent and rejuvenate our cultural heritage by re- imagining the traditional medium of Chinese ink art, UOB will present a series of dynamic programmes that capture the essence of our steadfast support for art. We are truly excited to be providing audiences with an invigorating and unique art experience.”

Corey Andrew Barr, Fair Director, Art Central, said, “Art Central’s acclaimed curated programmes have long-championed practices that capture the dynamism, innovation and experimentation at the forefront of Asia’s contemporary art landscape. We are delighted to continue our long-standing partnerships with UOB and Asia Society Hong Kong Center to bring an exceptional and inspirational programme that supports the art-makers and creative thinkers of tomorrow.”

Chris Wan, Curatorial Advisor, said, “Art Central is widely considered to be a Fair that captures the zeitgeist of contemporary art in Asia. As Curatorial Advisor of the Fair’s eighth edition, I am excited to present a multitude of spectacular creations that challenge the boundaries of contemporary Asian art in the Yi Tai Sculpture and Installation Projects. Art spectacle comes from everyday life, often changing shape and offering new opportunities to reflect our social relationships as mediated by images. I hope these immersive works will inspire fresh perspectives and compelling dialogues on the trajectory of art practices in the region among Art Central’s audiences.”

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