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Fifth "Artists in the Neighbourhood Scheme" launched today

     The Art Promotion Office (APO) has finally selected six outstanding exhibition proposals by five artists and an art group for the fifth Artists in the Neighbourhood Scheme (AIN). To enable the public to understand more about the selected artists and their exhibition proposals, which will be launched separately later, an exhibition, "Artists in the Neighbourhood Scheme V Launching Exhibition", will be held at the Exhibition Hall of the Hong Kong City Hall Low Block from tomorrow (January 29) to February 15, featuring 44 sets of artworks.

     AIN aims to bring art in the community by providing new exhibition venues for artists to display their latest works to the general public, thus fostering a closer relationship between art and daily life.

     The five artists and one art group selected from 92 applications submitted under AIN V are Ivy Ma, who explores the transformation of film and literature into lyrical visual expression; Foon Sham, who uses installations and sculptures to interact with viewers and express his concern about cancer; and Lam Tung-pang, who depicts local and global environmental issues using paints and a special vocabulary.  Also teaming up for the kick-off are Superb Meaningless Invention Group, comprising 19 local artists who take a creative approach to inventing different products; Rosanna Li, who presents a series of ceramics inspired by Laozi's Dao De Jing and conveys her thoughts on consumption in our society with her collection of papershoe-offerings; and Ou Da-wei, who manipulates a variety of Chinese calligraphic styles to configure a new visual language that can represent the profundity of Chinese culture.

     Ivy Ma attained her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Fine Art from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology University, Australia, and the Hong Kong Art School in 2001. She received a Masters Degree from the University of Leeds, UK in 2002. She then lived in the US and Finland, working on creating art.

     Foon Sham, born in Macau and raised in Hong Kong, is a sculptor and professor of Art at the University of Maryland, College Park, USA. He has participated in many solo and group exhibitions in the United States and other countries including Canada, Norway, Mexico, Australia and Hong Kong. His public collections include the Nayatad Sculpture Park in Hungary, 1995, the Gallery Place-Chinatown Metro-rail Station in Washington DC, 2000, the Museum of Contemporary Arts of Yucatan, Merida, Mexico, 2005, and the Hong Kong Museum of Art, 2008. Wood has always been the primary medium in his sculpture and installations. He has sawed, cut, laminated, stacked and carved, and his art echoes his personal feelings towards nature, disaster and the environment. In his recent installations, he has invited visitors to participate and share his thoughts and ideas.

     Lam Tung-pang is full-time painter currently living and working in Hong Kong. He studied Fine Art at The Chinese University of Hong Kong before undertaking an MA at Central St Martins College of Art, London. He has been awarded numerous scholarship and awards, including an Arts Scholarship from Hong Kong Arts Development Council (2003), "Young Artist of the Year, Hunting Art Prize" in the UK (2005) and "Hong Kong Contemporary Art Biennial Awards" (2009). He has exhibited extensively worldwide, and his works can be found in many private and public collections in the UK, USA and Hong Kong, including the Hong Kong Museum of Art. His artworks are mostly related to specific situations or social contexts, and some of them are on a monumental scale. He places great value on selecting a variety of media and special processes, such as burning, to express his creative ideas.

     The Superb Meaningless Invention Group consists of artists from different creative backgrounds, including visual artists, designers, writers, film art directors and musicians. Their inventive concepts originate from their close observations and attention to daily life. The group aims to address the most trifling concerns of everyday living by means of contemporary artistic thinking and techniques. It also encourages viewers to unleash their creativity and facilitates artistic communication and development. In 2009, the group organised the "Superb Meaningless Invention Exhibition" in Fo Tan. Inventions and designs by some of the group members have been used and collected by private collectors.

     Rosanna Li, born in Hong Kong, takes great interest in interpreting Chinese (Cantonese) homophones and exploring and expressing ideas through her kneaded ceramic figurines. Having resided since childhood in Hunghom, Rosanna is well accustomed to funeral and burial-related trades and products. The numerous types of paper offerings she has come across not only dazzled her, but inspired her with ideas and elements for creative expression. Her works are widely exhibited and can be found in the collections of the Hong Kong Museum of Art, the Hong Kong Heritage Museum, the Guangdong Museum of Art, the Guangdong Shiwan Ceramics Museum and the Zhejiang Art Museum.

     Ou Da-wei began learning art at the age of 14 under Wu Zifu, a renowned artist in Guangzhou. He excels in calligraphy, landscape painting, seal carving and classical poetry, with each reflecting his unique artistic style. Ou has received a number of rewards and is currently teaching at the Department of Fine Arts at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. His works have been collected by various organisations,including Hong Kong Museum of Art and Hong Kong Heritage Museum. He has a solid foundation in calligraphy and demonstrates strong rhythm in his works through mastery of fast and slow strokes that integrate with his poems. He seldom applies colours in his ink paintings, but chooses to present landscapes with sophisticated strokes and ink of various gradations.  He creates precise spatial contrast in his seal carvings and perfectly assimilates calligraphy with seal carving. With more than 50 years of artistic pursuit, he has skillfully merged the essence of Chinese traditional art into his poetry, calligraphy, ink painting and seal carving.

     Solo exhibitions of the selected artists or art group are scheduled to take place from June 2011 to 2013 at different Leisure and Cultural Services Department venues. The APO also works with different partners to extend the exhibitions to a greater variety of venues to broaden the audience base. The project partners of the AIN V Scheme include Commercial Press (HK) Ltd., Jao Tsung-i Academy, JCCAC Artist Village, Queen Elizabeth Hospital and Art in Hospital, The Link Management Ltd, Sino Group's "Art in Hong Kong".

     The Hong Kong City Hall Low Block is located at 5 Edinburgh Place, Central. It is open daily from 10am to 8pm. It will open from 10am to 5pm on February 2 (The Chinese New Year's Eve) and will be closed on February 3 (The Chinese New Year). Admission is free.

     During the exhibition period, a series of free art programmes will be organised for the public and an "Arts Accessibility Service" will be provided by partner organisation "Arts with the Disabled Association of Hong Kong", for people with disabilities. Please browse for details of the activities and exhibition. For enquiries, please call 3101 2712 / 3101 2713.

Ends/Friday, January 28, 2011


"The Room is Not Still", by Ivy Ma. With reference to the scene with the three potted plants in Yasujiro Ozu's classic film "Tokyo Story", the artist has drawn many experimental sketches on paper. Using these static drawings, she restores the motion of the film.


"Vessel of Hope II", by Foon Sham. While working in his woodcraft workshop, Foon Sham received the devastating news that his mother had died of cancer. From a yearning deep within, he made an ark for her in wood, his most familiar material. Writing his wishes and blessings on an escort of paper boats, he bade her farewell in the hope that she would sail peacefully to heaven.


"Condition II", by Lam Tung-pang. This artwork is related to recent local and international environmental issues. Lam Tung-pang delivers his message using "bird" postal stamps, asking Hong Kong people who feel threatened by bird flu to think deeply about how people can coexist with the surrounding environment.


"Bathreader", by Homan Ho. Bathrooms are a paradise for thinkers and a source of inspiration. However, this is what the bathroom is missing. With this "Bathreader", people can now enjoy bathing and reading in one room.


"Soles for the Souls III", by Rosanna Li. Rosanna believes that funerals and burials are significant rituals in traditional Chinese culture, in which the burning of paper clothes and other offerings play an important role. If, as it is said, spirits have no feet, then why do people take so much interest in choosing paper shoes for their ancestors? With acute perception, Rosanna invites the viewer to reflect on modes of consumption in our society - is it vanity, or compulsive buying? Or what is it?


"Meditation of Vajra", by Ou Da-wei. Ou is devoted to many forms of Chinese art, including poetry, calligraphy, painting and seal carving. Different elements of traditional Chinese art are integrated into his works, and reborn in new ways of creation. With calligraphy assimilated with painting, or vice versa, the artwork demonstrates a perfect merger of the two, reflecting his emotions and persistence in pursuing aesthetic perfection.





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