While Hong Kong is well-known as one of the world’s most important art marketplaces—home to major art auctions and Art Basel’s venture in Asia—this autumn, a number of exhibitions at galleries and institutions prove that the city’s art scene has more to offer than just headline-grabbing sales. Don’t miss these five shows opening ahead of the fall auction season.
Danh Vō at White Cube
Sep. 7–Nov. 12, 50 Connaught Road Central, Central, Hong Kong
Danh Vō at White Cube, Hong Kong, 2016. © Danh Vo. Photo © White Cube (Kitmin Lee).
This isn’t just Vō’s first solo exhibition in Hong Kong, but also his debut with White Cube, which opened its branch here in March 2012. The exhibition features a series of new works from the acclaimed Vietnamese-born Danish artist, including an elaborate installation with a 266-word-long title, taken from a line spoken by the demon in the horror classic The Exorcist (1973). This work is shown alongside another expansive and poetic installation comprised of more than 450 mammoth fossils, and an ivory figure suspended from the ceiling.
Trevor Yeung at Blindspot Gallery
Sep. 24–Nov. 19, 15/F, Po Chai Industrial Building, 28 Wong Chuk Hang Road, Wong Chuk Hang, Hong Kong
Trevor Yeung, “The Sunset of Last Summer” concept image, 2016. Image courtesy of Trevor Yeung and Blindspot Gallery.
A young, rising star of Hong Kong’s art scene (he was one of the three artists shortlisted for the BMW Art Journey award at Art Basel in 2015), Yeung presents a new solo exhibition this fall at Blindspot Gallery, which has grown into a powerhouse in promoting photography and Hong Kong artists. In the show, titled “The Sunset of Last Summer,” Yeung continues to utilize horticulture and aquatic life in photography and installations to explore the depth of interpersonal relationships. Works on view reflect Yeung coming to terms with a personal, inner conflict, around memories of a faded romance, and larger questions of the nature of relationships among human beings and notions of nostalgia, space, and imagination.
Apichatpong Weerasethakul at Para Site
Sep. 18–Nov. 27, 22/F, Wing Wah Industrial Building, 677 King’s Road, Quarry Bay, Hong Kong
Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Mr. Electrico (for Ray Bradbury), 2014. Image courtesy of the artist.
The internationally renowned Thai artist and filmmaker Weerasethakul (winner of the Palme d’Or at the 63rd Cannes Film Festival) is one of a handful of individuals in Asia who have earned high respect in the worlds of both film and contemporary art. His Para Site exhibition, “The Serenity of Madness,” explores Weerasethakul’s extensive output of short films and video installations, in parallel with his drawings and photography. His works embody socio-political accounts of life in Thailand and outside of it, often delving into the narratives of marginalized groups of society. Curated by the esteemed Gridthiya Gaweewong, and produced by the Independent Curators International (ICI), “The Serenity of Madness” is the artist’s first solo show in Hong Kong.
Tsang Kin-Wah at M+ Pavilion
Sep. 9–Nov. 6, West Kowloon Cultural District
Tsang Kin-Wah, ̶N̶o̶t̶h̶i̶n̶g̶, 2016. ©Tsang Kin-Wah. Image courtesy of the artist.
After nearly two decades of debates, delays, and political rows, the West Kowloon Cultural District is coming into shape with the opening of M+ Pavilion, the first permanent structure at the HK$21.6 billion (US$2.79 billion) arts hub and the temporary space for M+, the ambitious visual culture museum that promises to rival the Museum of Modern Art in New York. “Tsang Kin-Wah: ̶N̶o̶t̶h̶i̶n̶g̶ ” is not just the inaugural show of M+ Pavilion, it is also a revival and extension of Tsang’s exhibition “The Infinite Nothing” at the 56th Venice Biennale. “ ̶N̶o̶t̶h̶i̶n̶g̶ ” is an immersive, site-specific, multimedia installation inspired by Shakespeare’s Macbeth, which explores the the significance of life and the inevitability of fate. This exhibition will likely offer visitors a taste of what M+ will look like when it opens in the district in 2019.
Lin Chi-Wei at Hanart TZ Gallery
Sep. 2–Oct. 8, 401 Pedder Building, 12 Pedder Street, Central, Hong Kong
Lin Chi-Wei, Sarasvati, 2016. Image courtesy of the artist.
The Taiwanese Lin is well-regarded as a multidisciplinary artist and a pioneer in sound art. His first solo exhibition in Hong Kong, “Revolving Binary Forces” presents a body of work that Lin created between 2013 and 2016, a time period during which the artist’s childhood home was demolished and his father died after battling cancer. The experiences forced Lin to consider constructions of identity and the cultural landscape, which are reflected in the works on show. Drawing on materials and objects collected from his childhood home, Lin’s works transcend the melancholy of death in order to celebrate the experience of life.