“Elephants in Hong Kong” (2016)
French artist Guillaume Cornet always wanted to visit Hong Kong—but his drawings made it here before he did.
HK Magazine: Tell us about “Elephants in Hong Kong.” Guillaume Cornet: The “Elephants in Hong Kong” series was created as I was researching the architectural aspects of Hong Kong. I drew one building at a time, combining real references with my own created interpretations of skyscrapers and residential buildings.
HK: What’s Hong Kong in your eyes?
GC: I haven’t actually been to Hong Kong yet so these paintings are based on photographic research and discussions that I have had. But in my eyes it’s a city that seems to have everything. There is fascinating architecture in such densely populated areas, yet it’s so green and surrounded by water. HK: What do the elephants represent?
GC: The elephants represent my inner child, the joy of life and freedom. They are so big and powerful that they make the world look small. When you are drawing in the miniature scale I draw in, the larger size of the elephants means that I can still include great features.
HK: How do you see Hong Kong in your art?
GC: Looking from afar, from photos and descriptions, I have only focused my attention on the architecture and transport used in Hong Kong. But looking into the neon signage, street food vendors, street escalators, thousands of AC units, hanging bird cages… I have only started to portray Hong Kong. There is so much more I would like to develop—such as the culture, smells and noises.
Meet Cornet at the “Elephants in Hong Kong” opening on Mar 18, 7pm. Exhibition runs through Apr 20 at Odd One Out, G/F, 14 St Francis St., Wan Chai.