Im­pres­sive hoard

Hong Kong Tatler - - Faces -

While H Queen’s is not due to open un­til next year, it’s al­ready be­ing pressed into the ser­vice of art. Its hoard­ing will be­come a sort of out­door gallery dur­ing Art Week, in which artists se­lected by Lim and Hen­der­son will ex­hibit in­ter­ac­tive works. Ex­pect sur­pris­ing dis­plays by Frog King (pic­tured) and Lam Tung-pang, as well as a host of emerg­ing Hong Kong artists. To see ex­clu­sive, be­hind-the-scenes footage of artists dec­o­rat­ing the hoard­ing, check out hongkong­tatler.com/mar16 Asia and the rest of the world—and when Art Basel took over from Art HK in 2012, bring­ing in in­ter­na­tional col­lec­tors and giv­ing Hong Kong artists more ex­po­sure, he says.

Iron­i­cally, Wil­liam be­lieves lo­cal artists’ for­mer ob­scu­rity has helped fuel their cur­rent fame. “In­ter­na­tional cu­ra­tors al­ways felt that a lot of work by Hong Kong artists was chal­leng­ing and in­ter­est­ing. It’s never been a com­mer­cial mar­ket, so a lot of work is very pure and aca­demic. Since Hong Kong started mak­ing its mark on the global art map over the past decade, the work of its artists has piqued the in­ter­est of in­ter­na­tional gal­leries. Gal­leries started off here show­ing in­ter­na­tional artists, then re­alised there was a body of lo­cal artists pro­duc­ing good work. Art Basel put a stamp of ap­proval on their work. They were just undis­cov­ered—then they got dis­cov­ered.”

It’s hard to over­state Wil­liam’s love for con­tem­po­rary art. Favourite artists rep­re­sented in his col­lec­tion in­clude Lam Tung-pang and Chi Hoi, whose Moon Rise I hangs in his bed­room. For some­one with such a vast and revered col­lec­tion, it’s amus­ing to hear Wil­liam ad­mit he’s never been able to come up with a ra­tio­nale for what arouses his in­ter­est in par­tic­u­lar pieces. “I’m never very an­a­lyt­i­cal about why I like things. I try to get a thread not just of why I like a cer­tain work, but also of why peo­ple who take art se­ri­ously like it. With good art you can see the spirit of the artist in there. I’m still try­ing to an­a­lyse that. The process of talk­ing to an artist is re­ally ex­cit­ing.”

In the art world, as with ar­chi­tec­ture, there’s a grow­ing un­der­stand­ing in Hong Kong not just of the im­por­tance of aes­thet­ics, but also—rather char­ac­ter­is­ti­cally for our fair city—of how it can add value. “Hongkongers re­alise that good de­sign can bring value to a pro­ject,” Wil­liam says. “Art needs to have a soul and ar­chi­tec­ture is the same—it has to have a spirit and re­flect that some­body worked hard on it.

“There’s a point of awak­en­ing—peo­ple are start­ing to think about what ar­chi­tec­ture is. It’s not about an iconic, su­per­flu­ous ex­te­rior. De­sign needs to be holis­tic, tak­ing ac­count of the build­ing’s en­vi­ron­ment and pur­pose, how peo­ple re­late to it, how well it works for them. Le Cor­bus­ier or Frank Lloyd Wright would never let an­other per­son de­sign the in­te­rior of their build­ings. Peo­ple need to re­assess ar­chi­tec­ture in a more hu­man way— some­thing that re­sponds to peo­ple, use and cul­ture, and re­flects the way peo­ple live.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from China

© PressReader. All rights reserved.