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Up Close – Hollywood Road II

11 October 2021 - 14 November 2021



Jointly organised by the Nan Fung Group and curator MUSTHAVEKEYS, “Up Close – Hollywood Road II” will run in five venues, including four iconic antique galleries along Hollywood Road, and in Nan Fung Place in Sheung Wan, reinterpreting and liberating age-old objects from their original status.

The project was initiated by curators Hilda Chan and Iven Cheung, and artist Leelee Chan in 2020, is an extension of the first exhibition, introduce the integration of history and modernity as well as art and craftsmanship to revitalise the public’s impression of antiques and inspire new thinking about art and the community. The material used in the works, some of which are residues from manufacturing processes, will reveal the value of old objects and the right attitude to process them to highlight the concept of sustainability.

A multi-point exhibition, curated by MUSTHAVEKEYS, themed around the idea of “Antique Street”, audiences can find traces of the old days amidst new buildings, and embraces four antique galleries on Hollywood Road including Bonnie Lai Antiquities, GALLERY149, the Hon Ming Gallery and Wing Hing Co., as well as Nan Fung Place, to connect the commercial district in Sheung Wan through art.

The six participating Hong Kong artists and creative units: Leelee Chan, LAU Hok Shing, Sammi Mak, Wilson Shieh, Morgan Wong and YanYan restructure, reinterpret, and liberate age-old objects from their original status, to reveal the relationship between antiques and the modern-day community through their artwork and design.

Wilson Shieh’s work “Box Story” is featured in Wing Hing Co and Bonnie Lai Antiquities. Being trained in traditional Chinese fine-brush (gongbi) techniques, Shieh has used different creative media and materials to create “carton paintings” inspired by the antique collections and furnishings at the two galleries. He has transformed ordinary cartons that Wing Hing Co uses for storing catalogues into boxes with porcelain and enamel patterns. His playful works at Bonnie Lai Antiquities show fictional ancient stores and fabricated product descriptions, portraying Chinese customs and traditions, as well as highlighting the socio-economic conditions and foreign trade activities of past times. All the works will also be exhibited at Nan Fung Place.

Hon Ming Gallery exhibits Sammi Mak’s paintings of natural landscapes in abstraction, in which she surveys the bonds between her inner self and the real world. Her two artworks “Continuum” and “Growth” are inspired by artefacts and antique shops on Hollywood Road. The floating clouds and fresh breezes are influenced by the ethereal aesthetics of Ming Dynasty furnishings. Another installation at Hon Ming is a contemplation of the flow of time. Morgan Wong specialises in video, sculpture, installation and ready-made objects. His work “How should I live with them without you” encompasses concrete sculptures in the form of piles of book to illustrate the artist’s continuous exploration of the elapse of time and bygone epochs.

At GALLERY149, Leelee Chan has expanded on her creative conceptions from last year’s “Up Close – Hollywood Road”. Inspired by Hong Kong’s highly urbanised environment as well as ancient Chinese artifacts, her set of small sculptures “Present Relics” for GALLERY149 are made of natural materials from the present day and ready-made objects, together with fragments of terracotta figurines from the Northern Wei to the Tang dynasties. The sculptures not only provide glimpses into lives from long ago, but also offer a valuable lesson in Chinese history. On the other hand, YanYan incorporate clothing into the antique furniture and various collections, such as wood carving pendants, arhat beds, rounded-corner cabinets and fabric decorations. Visitors can even touch the works to feel the texture and the traces left by the previous users, and get to know different knitted fabrics. The experience echoes the exhibition’s curatorial approach of introducing antique collections in a way that is close to our daily lives.

At Nan Fung Place, LAU Hok Shing, who has a deep knowledge of traditional Chinese art and literature, combines his contemporary woodcarving skills with his own antique collection based on theme of Hollywood Road to present “Abnormal Institute of History and Culture of Hollywood Road”. The display resembles his own studio space, while letting the audience discover a new interaction between old and new which also makes a perfect introduction for this guided tour for this exhibition.

The artist-led tour will set off from Hollywood Road and move around the Sheung Wan community to look for traces of art. Through his vivid introductions using old objects, visitors can touch, feel and see to develop a deeper understanding of this iconic creative community.

Meanwhile, the knitwear design duo YanYan will showcase a vibrantly coloured four-panel tapestry. The designers drew inspirations from collections at the four participating antique shops including terracotta figurines from the Tang Dynasty, chairs from the Ming Dynasty, snuff bottles from the Qing Dynasty, and assorted cast iron, blue-glazed and purple-clay tea ware. Recycled yarns are used in the work to highlight the principal of upcycling. Some of the recycled yarns were donated by HKRITA’s Garment-to-Garment Recycle System. YanYan are also the image designers behind the artists and gallery owners participating in this episode. Their work actively interacts with diversified antiques and old artifacts to create new surprises in contemporary art through a series of photographs.


11 October 2021
14 November 2021
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