RTHK' s The Works focuses on Hong Kong's arts and cultural scene. The Works features news and reviews of visual and performing arts, design, literary and other “ works ” .
The Works presents the latest art's happening in Hong Kong to our audience.
Specialising in textile art and culture, the Centre for Heritage Arts and Textile at The Mills frequently introduces exhibitions and projects that are rooted in tradition. It also showcases contemporary works by artists from across Asia. Work from the Central Asian region is the focus of the current exhibition “Clouds, Power and Ornament” which emphasises not only the tradition but also how that heritage inspires contemporary textile creators.
During the Yuan Dynasty of the late 13th and 14th century, as the Mongols invaded China from the North, many potters fled south, particularly to Jingdezhen. There they took the art of porcelain production to new heights. On show at the University of Hong Kong's Museum and Art Gallery until the end of April, “Red and Blue and White” traces the development of red-and-white and blue-and-white ceramics through the Yuan and early Ming dynasties.
Nestled between Mount Davis and Victoria Peak, Lung Fu Shan, or Dragon Tiger Mountain is the site of Hong Kong’s smallest country park. The 47-hectare green oasis consists of woodlands and hiking trails and is home to over 100 species of birds. There is also a 130-year-old bungalow, which has, since 2008, been used as the Lung Fu Shan Environmental Education Centre. From 10th March, the centre is closed for a while. In advance of that closure, last Sunday ten local music and performance groups brought music and nature together in the park. Among them was the local bassoon ensemble, “Seven Foot Six and a Half”. Three of its members are with us right now.
March is here, and for art lovers in Hong Kong that means Art March, probably the busiest month in the calendar. The outdoor music festival Clockenflap, cancelled for the past four years, partly due to Covid-19, is back at the Central Harbourfront this weekend, and features around 100 live acts. And there are many more mega events to come. We'll be bringing you highlights throughout the month. As usual, Art March coincides with the annual Hong Kong Arts Festival which began two weeks ago. The theme this year is “Coming Back, Moving Forward”. Later in the show, I’ll be talking to sheng player Kevin Cheng and harpist Judy Ho about their upcoming concerts at the festival.
First though, a look at last month's retrospective exhibition of the work of local artist and architect Raymond Fung.
To commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Hong Kong Museum of Art and the 130th anniversary of the birth of painter Zhu Qizhan, the museum is showing over 80 of Zhu’s works that are representative of the late 19th century style of Chinese art known as the Shanghai School. Zhu is known for fusing the colour concepts of Western art with the calligraphic brushwork of traditional Chinese paintings, His unique painting style adhered to his three philosophies: independence, strength, and concision.
The sheng, one of the oldest Chinese instruments, is a mouth-blown polyphonic free reed instrument made up of vertical pipes. Sheng player Kevin Cheng believes the instrument has potential that goes far beyond traditional Chinese music. This Sunday, he's joining forces with a group of musicians from the Western tradition to showcase the sheng in a range of musical genres. He's here with harpist Judy Ho.
Singer-songwriter Olga Chung says she became aware of her calling to make music while she was at university studying business. She’ll be with us later to tell us more about her path to music and the arts. Before we immerse ourselves in Olga's music though, news of other forms of immersive art. As it has throughout history, advances in technology are influencing creation, most particularly as artists and exhibitors have taken to producing often large-scale works that are immersive or interactive, and - incidentally - also perfect Instagram subjects.
Artist Chu Chu studied oil painting at the China Academy of Art in Hangzhou, before moving on to new media and calligraphy. In her work, she mixes the traditional and modern, combining ink, calligraphy, painting and photography to present found objects from nature in a new light. At Alisan Fine Arts, the exhibition “Awakening” features her early black and white works depicting dried fruits, tree branches and other everyday objects, as well as her latest pieces which mix colour photography and calligraphy.
At university, Olga Chung studied business. She knew though it wasn’t something she felt passionate about. Music and theatre were, and are, where her heart is. She began writing music and has continued doing so for the past ten years. As a singer-songwriter, her style blends folk, pop, and alternative pop. Olga's with us right now.
Look at old colour photographs and films of Hong Kong's streets at night and one thing is going to jump out at you. The city was famous for its colourful and ubiquitous neon lights, although they were not allowed to flash or move due to the proximity of Kai Tak airport. Introduced to Hong Kong in the 1920s, neon signs became hugely popular from the 1950s onwards as Hong Kong's economy boomed. Now though they are disappearing.
From one iconic symbol of Hong Kong to another: the red-white-blue striped fabric initially used as cladding for building sites but later adapted to such use as making shopping bags. Durable and waterproof, this inexpensive and practical material has also gained visibility around the world. Stanley Wong, better known as anothermountainman, has been using this fabric and its colour theme for his long-running red-white-blue collection for more than twenty years. On show at Lucie Chang Fine Arts till 4th March, “on hong kong” includes both old and new works and projects by anothermountainman that encapsulate the spirit of Hong Kong.
The musical backgrounds and styles of Huqin player Chan Pik-sum and music arranger Johnny Yim are very different. Chan is trained in traditional Chinese music; Yim began studying the piano at the age of six. But their affinity for music, and for each other, brings them together as a musical duo. They're here now to tell us more about how Chinese and Western music can be the perfect blend.
For one Hong Kong painter, flowers have been the constant companions that have led her to art. “Fapopo” or “Flower Granny”, sold them for much of her working life. Now she paints them. Flowers, especially water lilies, are also recurring subjects in the work of Claude Monet. His love for horticulture and his development of a large garden in Giverny provided pleasure for the eye and subjects to paint. One of the first works Monet painted in his Giverny garden was "Pivoines" or "Peonies", painted in 1887. On show at Kwai Fung Hin Art Gallery, “Worlds Beyond Reality – Monet’s Legacy” takes that painting as a starting point for an examination of his influence on other painters, including Zao Wou-ki, Chu Teh-Chun, Lalan, David Hockney and more.
When he was five, Kent Nishimura asked his parents to buy him a guitar. They gave it to him as a Christmas present. As first he wanted to use it to accompany his own singing, but by the time he was six, inspired by solo acoustic guitarist Kotaro Oshio, he knew he wanted to play solo finger-style acoustic guitar.
At 12, he released his debut album “First Step” and started to perform solo concerts. Still not quite 20, he's won praise not only from his first idol Kotaro Oshio, but also from international musicians such as fingerstyle guitar legend Tommy Emmanuel. He's with us right now.
Like many European countries, Germany can boast a wide array of architectural styles, from the Romanesque to the Gothic and on to the Baroque, the Bauhaus, and the Modernist. Its buildings range from traditional timbered houses, to chalets, castles, and historic rural homes. This is the architectural heritage that inspired author and photographer Walter Koditek, who is now based in Hong Kong.
To commemorate the 120th anniversary of the birth of master, Ting Yin Yung, the University Museum and Art Gallery of the University of Hong Kong is featuring a retrospective exhibition of his work. Ting, gaining much inspiration from Western styles of art, brought together the techniques and characteristics of Western and Chinese painting. On show till the 26th February, “Enduring Strength and Passion: The Chinese and Western Art of Ting Yin Yung” showcases his straightforward and approachable style.
A music educator for more than three decades, Adrian Walter is also a renowned classical guitarist. He took up a position as the director of the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts in 2012, with the declared aim of positioning the academy as a “top-tier institution in the region.” Walter is also an authority on the repertoire and performance practice of the early nineteenth century guitar. In 2020, he retired from the academy, but he’s in back to Hong Kong this week for a concert of Mexican music with the City Chamber Orchestra of Hong Kong.
This is the time for our Lunar New Year celebration. All of us here on The Works and 藝坊星期天 wish everyone a lucky Year of the Rabbit. We’re here to bring you some festive music to celebrate the new year. To mark the 20th anniversary of its establishment, the Windpipe Chinese Music Ensemble is having a fund-raising concert during the holidays, and they are here to tell us more. And we'll also have TroVessional, a local band known for injecting innovative ideas into Cantonese and Chinese ethnic music.
According to the “Xin An Xian Zhi”, an 1819 gazette, the name Pokfulam refers to a species of bird called Pok-fu (薄鳧) that was once common in the area. Pokfulam Village has existed since the early 17th century. Today, the same name refers to a much larger neighbourhood that can boast several historic buildings including the Bethanie, a cluster of properties under the Old Dairy Farm, and Douglas Castle, now the University Hall of the University of Hong Kong. One of those historic buildings, the Old Dairy Farm Senior Staff Quarters has now been revitalised as a “living” museum.
"Crash & Explore” is a pilot project presented by the local group, K622 Clarinet Ensembles with the support of the Hong Kong Arts Development Council. That project focuses on developing new compositions and performances, as well as larger audiences, for the clarinet. Five recently graduated composers took part in the project, and we now have members of K622 Clarinet Ensembles with us to tell us more.
Luis Chan came to Hong Kong from Panama at the age of five in 1910. He died in 1995, leaving a rich legacy of work in many styles, work that reflected Hong Kong's changing landscape and art scene. On show at the Hong Kong Art Centre, “All The World’s A Stage” is a flagship exhibition of “Fuk Bak”’s art and legacy.
Hylozoism is the philosophical point of view that all matter is in some way alive, and that this life or spiritual activity unifies all matter. The exhibition “Hylozoism” at the Hong Kong Design Institute Gallery, addresses the ways in which mankind and technology impact nature. Local and international artists and design studios, such as fuse*, Ellen Pau, Keith Lam, Ryuichi Sakamoto and Philip Beesley present five new media works, films, soundscapes, installations, and a pop-up garden, to create a "neo-nature" environment.
The compositions of composer and pianist Arno Babajanian are influenced by Khachaturian and Rachmaninov. They range from popular songs in collaboration with renowned Russian poets, film scores, and ballet pieces to works in more virtuosic and chromatic genres. Armenian folk music and traditions are key to his own artistry. Violinist Kitty Cheung and pianist Jenny Ng are here to talk to us about their upcoming concert featuring one of his best-known sonatas.