監製:Diana Wan


    In mainland China even the words “June 4th” are sensitive pretty much all the time. They are even more taboo every year as the date nears, and even more so this year as it’s the 30th anniversary of the 1989 Tiananmen Square crackdown. Although the candles can still be lit here in Hong Kong in Victoria Park, the organisers of the vigil, who also run the June 4th museum, say it’s getting harder every year. Last November, the Chinese political cartoonist Badiucao had an exhibition in Hong Kong cancelled after threats from the Chinese authorities. Six months later, he’s set to appear in a documentary about his art in the context of the event’s 30th anniversary. The hour-long film “China’s Artful Dissident” will be broadcast in Australia on June 4th. The film details how he was inspired by Tank Man, the individual who stood in front of the tanks in defiance. Here in Hong Kong, artists and art organisations who do work related to June 4th or indeed any political art, say they are also finding it increasingly hard to find spaces in which to present that work.

    What kind of sound would you expect to get if you combined a pipa, a double bass, electric guitar, trumpet, and piano? Well you can soon find out.
    The Chinese band, Wuji Ensemble and the jazz band Mo-Men-T are joining forces for the first time in an up-coming concert, “Boundless Groove” in which they mix Chinese and Western instruments to explore new possibilities.
    Both groups aim to develop a repertoire that’s experimental, innovative, and collaborative, and they are here to tell us more.

    聯絡: wanyt@rthk.hk


    • HKPhil

      HKPhil "Sounds of Hong Kong", artist Carol Bove & in the studio: harmonica player Patrick Yeung & Gordon Lee

      At the beginning of the month, to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Hong Kong Cultural Centre, the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra presented a concert called “Sounds of Hong Kong”, featuring many local musicians and groups. The concert also featured commissioned works by four Hong Kong composers: Ray Leung, Austin Yip, Pui-shan Cheung and Joyce Tang. We went to talk to two of them.

      New York-based conceptual artist Carol Bove is known for her large vibrantly-coloured metal sculptures that often combine found scrap metal and square steel tubing that has been crushed and manipulated. Often, they also incorporate a smooth, highly polished steel disk. How you interpret them is very much up to you. One of Bove’s aims is to challenge and expand the possibilities of formal abstraction to let the viewer decide on the different narrative that could emerge. Until the middle of December, the David Zwirner gallery is showing pieces from her ongoing series of “collage sculptures”, a series of compositions in steel that she began creating in 2016.

      Harmonica players Patrick Yeung and Gordon Lee have been friends since they met at university. Both later decided to become full-time musicians. They formed a harmonica band, The Myth, in 2012. The two not only play the standard harmonica repertoire, they’re also dedicated to expanding by arranging and commissioning new works for the instrument. They’re with us now to tell us more.

    • Tai Po Art Centre, Yukiko Morimot & studio performance: pianist Angela Cheng

      Tai Po Art Centre, Yukiko Morimot & studio performance: pianist Angela Cheng

      The Hong Kong Arts Development Council implemented the ADC Arts Space Scheme in 2014 to help address the problems of the lack of space for artists in Hong Kong. Under the scheme, three venues have been opened for a while, one in Aberdeen five years ago, and two in Kwun Tong last year. In late September, the scheme added a new space, this one in Tai Po, through repurposing a former secondary school.

      Japanese printmaker, Yukiko Morimoto mixes copperplate printmaking with mixed-media techniques such as photography, fabri transfer printing, pencil drawing and acrylic painting in her work. On show at the Art Projects Gallery until the end of the month, “Longing for Innocence” features a collection of images of children wearing masks of real and imaginary creatures.

      The Hong Kong Generation Next Arts annual music festival got under way last week. Now in its sixth year, the three-week long festival this year focuses on celebrating “great women artists of the world”. One of the highlights is a tribute to composer and pianist Clara Schumann. This year – September 13th to be precise - is the 200th anniversary of her birth. Canadian pianist Angela Cheng opened the festival with the Philharmonia APA, and she’s here to tell us just what made Clara Schumann such a musical pioneer.

    • Artist Residency, Shozo Shimamoto x AU & in the studio: The Bergcrantz

      Artist Residency, Shozo Shimamoto x AU & in the studio: The Bergcrantz

      The idea of the art residency began to take form in the United States and Europe at the turn of the 20th century, when art-lovers with deep pockets like Isabelle Gardner began offering part of their homes to favourite artists as a new kind of patronage. This form of support and opportunity for artists to travel, develop their work, and make international connections, is now provided by a variety of different institutions and sponsors, and can provide an important boost to the careers of many.

      In past editions of The Works we’ve mentioned the “Gutai” group in Japan. Founded in 1954 by Shozo Shimamoto, along with Jiro Yoshihara and other students, the group was the first radical post-war artistic movement in the country. On show at Whitestone gallery until 17th November, “VIBRANT: Shozo Shimamoto x AU” shows a selection of works by Shimamoto and a group of artists from the Artist Union, with whom he formerly collaborated. The group changed its name to Art Unidentified, or AU, in 1980.

      Formerly Hong Kong-based Swedish bassist Rickard Malmsten is a regular guest of The Works. He’s a keen promoter of Nordic jazz and of bringing Swedish jazz musicians to the world. Among those he’s brought to our studio in the past are renowned trumpet and flugelhorn player Anders Bergcrantz and his wife, pianist Anna-Lena Laurin Bergcrantz. But the whole family is a musical family, and today Anders and Lena are here with their two daughters Rebecca and Iris.

    • Two young artists' works that reflect the current political crisis, Kogei at HKU museum & in the studio: guitarist Sharon Isbin

      Two young artists' works that reflect the current political crisis, Kogei at HKU museum & in the studio: guitarist Sharon Isbin

      It’s now heading for five months since the anti-extradition bill protests began. In the first episode of this season, we talked about the creative methods some protesters are adopting to deliver their political messages. Today, we’re looking at the works of two young artists that reflect their perspectives of current events.

      The term “Kogei” in Japanese means “traditional arts and crafts” and has a long history. The crafts are divided into eight categories that incorporate pottery, textiles, lacquerware, metalworking, doll-making, bamboo, woodworking, and papermaking. Five requirements are necessary for an object to be officially recognised as being an example of a traditional Japanese craft. It must be for regular use, mainly handmade, using traditional techniques and materials and made in a specific region identified with that craft. On show at the University of Hong Kong, until 3rd November, the exhibition “Living Kogei” contains 70 works from the Ise Collection by prominent and contemporary Japanese artists.

      American guitarist Sharon Isbin is a multiple Grammy Award winner. She is also founding director of the Guitar Department at the Juilliard music school. Two weeks ago, she was named the 2020 Instrumentalist of the Year by Musical America Worldwide, the first guitarist to receive the award in its 59 year history. Her repertoire includes folk and country music, classical pieces, and music for films. Among the wide range of people with whom she has worked are Martin Scorsese, Joan Baez and Mark O’Connor. Sharon Isbin has reinvented, expanded and updated the guitar’s repertoire, and she’s with us right now.

    • Glass artist Sunny Wang, Lee Kai-chung's exhibition on transition & in the studio: Romer String Quartet

      Glass artist Sunny Wang, Lee Kai-chung's exhibition on transition & in the studio: Romer String Quartet

      In a city as densely populated as Hong Kong, the lack of space for artists to do large-scale work is a constant challenge. Lampworking, a type of glasswork in which glass is melted by a torch or lamp doesn’t necessarily require huge amounts of space, but glass art in general can require a large workshop to house the furnaces for glass making. Despite that limitation, Hong Kong does have a few studios, galleries and artists that focus on this art that dates as far back as 4,000 B.C. Sunny Wang is a glass artist who also teaches the art and helped established the glass workshop at Hong Kong Baptist University.

      The annual WYNG Media Award is a series of programmes that focus on visual images related to social issues affecting Hong Kong. The programme is curated under a different theme each year. In 2017/2018, responding to the theme of “Transition”, Lee Kai-chung took on Hong Kong’s history through the study of historical records and objects. On show at the WMA Space, “I Could Not Recall How I Got Here” is an interim exhibition that shows Hong Kong’s ‘transition’ through sculptures, photography, videos and installations.

      The Romer String Quartet was formed in 2013 when four locally born musicians got together. They were last on The Works five years ago. Today, they’re here again to talk about their upcoming chamber music concert that focuses on five Nordic composers, Sibelius, Leifs, Nielsen, Grieg and Stenhammar.

    • Tze Shan Monastery, German-French sculptor Arp & in the studio: dorma player Ekaterina Machalova

      Tze Shan Monastery, German-French sculptor Arp & in the studio: dorma player Ekaterina Machalova

      Any time Tung Tsz in Tai Po is in your line of sight, it’s hard to miss seeing a giant Guan Yin, Goddess of Mercy standing in the mountains. It’s the world’s largest Guan Yin statue and a major attraction at the Tsz Shan Monastery. The compound provides visitors with a tranquil and uncontaminated sanctuary for spiritual purification and has several halls and an art museum. Members of the public can visit for free after registering.

      Hans Arp, better known as Jean Arp was a German-French sculptor, painter, poet, and abstract artist associated with Surrealism, the Dada movement and the 20th century avant-garde. Today he’s perhaps best known for his smooth-surfaced and sensuous abstract sculptures. On show at Hauser & Wirth till the beginning of November, “Arp: Master of 20th Century Sculpture” is the first solo exhibition of Arp’s works in China. It includes 28 works, including woodcuts, cardboard collages, drawings, wood reliefs, and – of course - sculptures.

      Ekaterina Machalova was born in Baranovichi in Belarus. She began playing two lute instruments, the mandolin and the domra, at the age of six. Not only has she won prizes in as many as twenty international Russian competitions and festivals, she has also premiered a number of new compositions for the two instruments. She’s in Hong Kong to give a concert at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology and she’s here to tell us more.

    • HK artists Luke Ching x South Ho on the current protests, Leonardo da Vinci@City U & in the studio: percussion duo Remix

      HK artists Luke Ching x South Ho on the current protests, Leonardo da Vinci@City U & in the studio: percussion duo Remix

      Two weeks ago, we examined the outburst of creativity that’s appeared in response to Hong Kong’s ongoing extradition bill protests. Streets, walls and public areas have become not only venues but also canvasses for protesters to put their political messages across. The works of artists Luke Ching and South Ho often reflect Hong Kong’s socio-political realities. Most of the pieces in “Liquefied Sunshine/Force Majeure”, a dual solo exhibition by Ching and Ho at the Blindspot Gallery, were completed before the current wave of turmoil hit the streets, but they nevertheless do seem to reflect what’s happening right now.

      As a Renaissance man, Leonardo da Vinci is believed it was an individual’s goal to reach the fullest potential in life. For him, science and art weren’t opposites. He was a scientist, painter, architect, inventor, engineer, mathematician and artist. On show at the City University of Hong Kong Exhibition Gallery are 12 of Leonardo’s original drawings.
      The drawings are accompanied by five machines modelled on Leonardo’s designs, and by works by a group of contemporary artists that reflect the master’s legacy.

      Two weeks ago, we introduced an upcoming concert, “Now, 30” curated by pianist Wong Ka-jeng. He brought the trio Smash to our studio and played us a piece that fused Beethoven with the UK rock band, Queen. That concert is on 20th October at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre. It also includes a group of young musicians performing classical pieces and new works. Among them, are Raymond Vong and Emily Cheng, working as a percussion duo known as Re.MIX. They are here with us now.

    • Ink artist Irene Chou, Yin Xiuzhen x Louise Nevelson & in the studio: percussionist Matthew Lau

      Ink artist Irene Chou, Yin Xiuzhen x Louise Nevelson & in the studio: percussionist Matthew Lau

      Lui Shou-Kwan was one of the pivotal figures in Hong Kong’s New Ink Painting Movement, which took traditional Chinese ink art in a new and exciting direction by incorporating ideas from Western Expressionism, and Western Conceptual and Abstract art. Among the many artists on whom Lui had a significant influence was Irene Chou, whose work is currently being presented in a solo exhibition as part of its celebration of Chinese female artists by the Asia Society Hong Kong.

      From East meeting West in ink art, we’re turning to East meeting West in installation art. At the Pace Gallery, works by two artists from different times and different cultural backgrounds are on show side by side. Leading Abstract Expressionist Louise Nevelson was one of the pioneers of site-specific installations. She is known for her monumental chromatic large-scale sculptures. Chinese artist, Yin Xiuzhen’s colourful works create a different kind of conversation.

      Percussionist Matthew Lau is no stranger to The Works. Often performing on the vibraphone and marimba, Matthew has a strong interest in contemporary percussion music.
      In his upcoming solo concert, he’s focusing on expanding the repertoire by incorporating electronics and technologies. He’s even commissioned some new works for it. He’s here to tell us more.

    • The cultural meanings behind the art that's sprung up in the Extradition Bill protests & in the studio: Smash

      The cultural meanings behind the art that's sprung up in the Extradition Bill protests & in the studio: Smash

      Hello and welcome to a new series of The Works. It’s been a long, hot, and tension-inducing summer. For more than three months, Hong Kong has been gripped by the extradition law protests. The young people taking part have been mobilising through social media, online forums, and messaging apps. “Be Water” is their motto, and their activities have been fluid, leaderless, and open source. That fluidity and creativity has also extended to the means they use to get their messages across.

      As the Chinese idiom goes, “independent at thirty”. Turning 30 is seen as a new life stage for many people. “Now, 30” is the title of a concert that’s coming up in October in which a group of musicians will be coming together to present an evening of classical music and original compositions. They include pianists Wong Wai-yin and twin sisters Chau Lok-ping and Chau Lok-ting, double bassist Chan Chun, and percussionists Raymond Vong and Emily Cheng.
      Also taking part are the members of the Smash trio. They’re here to tell us more.

    • Venice Biennale IV, Raimund Girke & Dimitris Papaioannou's The Great Tamer

      Venice Biennale IV, Raimund Girke & Dimitris Papaioannou's The Great Tamer

      Over the past month, we’ve visited Venice a few times to take a look at Hong Kong’s contribution and at the work in several national pavilions at the 58th Venice Biennale. These official exhibitions take over the city until November, but they are not the only things going on over the next few months. Here are some of the other attractions we found while we were there.

      The late Raimund Girke was an artist from Germany whose monochrome paintings and works are inspired by the Chinese sage Laozi. The title of Girke’s third solo exhibition at the Axel Vervoordt Gallery, “The Silent Balance”, is taken from the Laozi phrase: “Countless words count less than the silent balance of yin and yang.” White is the central colour in Girke’s work, providing a motif, a guideline, and both foreground and background. Any other colours, often muted, have to strike a silent balance with the white.

      Choreographer Dimitris Papaioannou is at the centre of the Greek theatrical avant-garde. After studying fine arts under Dimitris Mytaras, he attracted attention as a visual artist, illustrator and comic book creator. He went on to stage performance, including directing the opening ceremony of the Athens 2004 Olympic Games, which gained him considerable international attention. After three decades of creating stage works, last year he produced a full-evening work for Tanztheatre Wuppertal Pina Bausch, the first choreographer to do so since Bausch’s death in 2009. Three weeks ago, he came to Hong Kong for the first time, with his earlier production, The Great Tamer.

      Well that’s it from us for this season. Time for The Works to take its annual summer break. But we’ll be back in the autumn. Until then, whether you simply enjoy the creative works of others, or create your own, have a great summer. See you soon.