Seven female artists share their perspectives of women's art
In the past, women of a traditionally gender-stereotyping society were usually labeled as a certain social type with strong cliche of what they should be, like virtuous, feminine and puny etc. Today, though the rise of women's right has made drastic changes in attitude and social consciousness towards female roles, there are still a lot of bondages imposed on women in many aspects. Even in the field of art creation, women's creativity and works of art are usually identified as "women's art" implying the existence of certain common stylistic characteristics and typical conceptual representation.
Is there any real differentiation between "men's art" and "women's art"? Are there any common characteristics and elements in the works created by women? In an exhibition entitled "Woman" Wanted, seven local female artists: Lily Lau Lee-lee, Li Wei-hen, Sin Yuen, Kwok Ying, Wong Wo-bik, Eva Yuen Man-wah and Bell Hui Chui-hung attempt to express their personal views of women's art through their specific choices of artistic medium and language. Visitors can take this opportunity to get a personal encounter and communication with "her" works, and make their own definition on "women's art".
"Woman" Wanted exhibition, the 5th in the exhibition series of Women Festival organised by the Hong Kong Heritage Museum (Heritage Museum), will run from tomorrow (January 8) to July 7 with the aims to study the gender implications by examining our society from various perspectives, to celebrate the contributions of women, to search for their identities and to explore what women want in the new millennium.
The seven participating artists, specialised in different artistic media, are unique individuals with characters of their own. Each artist was requested to select a colour scheme to represent herself and provide her own statement of femininity. Among them, the cartoonist Lily Lau Lee-lee does not only scrutinise the world and the relations between sexes, but also delves into self analysis through her cartoons. The ceramic artist Li Wei-hen interprets the gender relations in a humorous way by transforming words visually into ceramic figures. Working in a male dominant photographic circle, photographer Wong Wo-bik attempts to develop a new independent sphere by means of her gaze.
The installation artist Eva Yuen Man-wah uses the traditional Chinese paper figures to manifest how she has turned from a rebellious young woman to a wife and a mother, a truly lived out feminine experience. Bell Hui Chui-hung makes up a fairly tale about a beached whale with mix media to express her refusal of bowing before any authoritarian dictates and sexual definitions. Painter Sin Yuen believes female body has imposed a great number of bondages on women. Her works spell out that only through the understanding of one's true and inner feelings can help moulding the identity and uniqueness of a character. Through the finely and patiently rendered strokes, Kwok Ying subtly shares her concrete experiences of being a woman.
From January 11 until February 10, another exhibition of the Women Festival, "The Quilt Project Exhibition", will be staged at the Heritage Museum. Jointly presented by the Art for All, the Art Promotion Office and the Heritage Museum, the exhibition features the fruitful results and documentation of the workshops on fabric art entitled "Sew Your Heart Out". Every piece of craft on display carries its own story and sentiments of the 25 participants who come from different backgrounds.
Located at 1 Man Lam Road in Sha Tin, the Heritage Museum opens from 10 am to 6 pm from Monday to Saturday, and from 10 am to 7 pm on Sundays and public holidays. It closes on every Tuesday (except public holidays) and the first two days of the Chinese New Year. It will close at 5 pm on Chinese New Year's Eve. Admission fee is $10, with half-price concession for senior citizens aged 60 or above, people with disabilities and full-time students. Admission on Wednesdays is free. Moreover, there are free shuttle-bus services available between KCR Sha Tin Station and the Museum from 10 am to 6 pm on Saturdays and from 10 am to 7 pm on Sundays and public holidays.
Details of the Women Festival series are now available on the Heritage Museum's website: www.heritagemuseum.gov.hk. For enquiries, please call 2180 8188.
End/Tuesday, January 7, 2003