Renowned local cartoonist Louie Yu-tin, who passed away in 2008, left behind a number of valuable artefacts relating to his work. His family has generously donated this valuable collection to the Hong Kong Heritage Museum, which held the "Cartoonist Louie Yu-tin's Collection Donation Ceremony" today (February 22) to express gratitude to Louie's family.
Officiating guests at the donation ceremony were the Deputy Director (Culture) of Leisure and Cultural Services, Ms Cynthia Liu; the representative of Louie Yu-tin's family, Mr Loui Wai-po; the donors of Louie Yu-tin's collection, Ms Tracy Louie and Dr Aloisius Louie; and the Chief Curator of the Hong Kong Heritage Museum, Ms Belinda Wong.
Addressing the donation ceremony, Ms Liu noted that when Louie Yu-tin passed away in 2008, his son Dr Aloisius Louie and daughter Ms Tracy Louie decided to donate more than 80 items from Louie's collection to the Hong Kong Heritage Museum, including his original cartoon drawings, his publications, manuscripts of his novels and film-related materials.
"Not only does the collection provide an insight into Louie's drawing and writing styles, it also highlights the trend toward social commentary on topical issues in cartoons that enjoyed great popularity in the mid-20th century," Ms Liu said.
Louie (1926-2008) was born Louie Che-tao in Hong Kong, and his love of comics was evident from a young age. Not only did he frequent roadside magazine kiosks to read his favourite comic books, he also busied himself sketching portraits. Louie never had the opportunity to receive any formal training in art, but as destiny would have it, his gift was recognised by an editor of a Macau newspaper, and Louie's creative journey was launched. Louie rose rapidly through the ranks from errand boy to proofreader to editor within a few short years.
When the Second World War ended, Louie returned to Hong Kong. He took on the position of editor at the China Daily, where he produced satirical comic strips for the Hong Kong news section. Louie was invited to join the Chum Po newspapers in Guangzhou in 1946. His "Woo Lung Wong" strips started publication there and were enthusiastically received by readers in the province, Hong Kong and Macau. In 1949, when the political situation in Mainland China changed once again, Louie moved back to Hong Kong. The daily punchlines and extended storylines continued at the Chung Sing Po newspaper and in other dailies and periodical publications. In addition, Louie also enjoyed success as an author, and his novels, entitled "Enemy of Home" and "Ming Revival", were about resistance and the struggle against enemy invasion. In the 1960s, Louie also took up roles as a film critic and a part-time film promoter. He became known not just as a cartoonist and writer, but also as a multi-talented creative force. When the publication of "Woo Lung Wong" ceased in the late 1960s, Louie withdrew from the world of comics. He later retired and relocated to Canada.
The most popular work by Louie is "Woo Lung Wong", which began publication in 1946 in Chum Po. The central character was the rotund and moustachioed Wong Lung-woo, nicknamed Woo Lung Wong or Addlebrained Wong, depicted as a greedy bully dressed in a traditional Chinese cheongsam. In addition, Louie also created a host of other memorable characters, including Jim Jui Mau, Lin Yung So, Ho Bit Siu, George Cheung, Short-sighted Bo, Prodigious Dai Tou Jai and Uncle Fook. The comic highlighted real-life social injustices in the post-war period and chastised corrupt and incompetent government officials through the caricatures of Wong and his fellow protagonists. Readers responded to the witty and satirical content of these comic strips, as well as humorous dialogue in colloquial Cantonese, with a hearty embrace. The comics were an instant hit with the general public throughout South China, especially in Guangzhou, Hong Kong and Macau, and their popularity led to a movie adaptation.
To give the public an opportunity to learn more about this donation, an exhibition entitled "Woo Lung Wong: Exhibition of Cartoonist Louie Yu Tin's Collection" will be held from today to June 4 at the Hong Kong Heritage Museum. About 50 items were selected from the collection for display in this exhibition.
For details of the exhibition, please visit the webpage of the Hong Kong Heritage Museum at www.heritagemuseum.gov.hk/eng/exhibitions/exhibition_details.aspx?exid=183 or call 2180 8188.
The Hong Kong Heritage Museum is located at 1 Man Lam Road, Sha Tin. It is open from 10am to 6pm on Mondays and Wednesdays to Saturdays, and from 10am to 7pm on Sundays and public holidays. It is closed on Tuesdays (except public holidays). Admission is $10 and a half-price concession is available to full-time students, senior citizens and people with disabilities. Admission is free on Wednesdays.
Ends/Wednesday, February 22, 2012
The "Cartoonist Louie Yu Tin's Collection Donation Ceremony" was held today (February 22) at the Hong Kong Heritage Museum. Picture shows the guests (from left): donor of Louie Yu-tin's collection Ms Tracy Louie; the representative of Louie Yu-tin's family, Mr Loui Wai-po; Louie Yu-tin's wife; the Deputy Director (Culture) of Leisure and Cultural Services, Ms Cynthia Liu; donor of Louie Yu-tin's collection Dr Aloisius Louie; and the Chief Curator of the Hong Kong Heritage Museum, Ms Belinda Wong.
Dr Aloisius Louie hands a collection item to Ms Liu to signify the generous donation of more than 80 valuable artefacts to the Hong Kong Heritage Museum.
Original artwork for the serial comic "Woo Lung Wong", published during the 1950s, which has been donated to the Hong Kong Heritage Museum by Dr Aloisius Louie and Ms Tracy Louie.
Ms Liu (second left) and Louie Yu-tin's wife (first left) visit "Woo Lung Wong: Exhibition of Cartoonist Louie Yu Tin's Collection".
Louie Yu-tin working at the Hong Kong newspaper Chun Lan Yat Po in 1960. The photo is on display at "Woo Lung Wong: Exhibition of Cartoonist Louie Yu Tin's Collection".
A comic book from the series "Woo Lung Jai", published during the 1950s, on display at "Woo Lung Wong: Exhibition of Cartoonist Louie Yu Tin's Collection".