Wednesday, April 22, 2020

In Conversation with Katie Fallen for Ocula from 2016

"The Hong Kong art world, despite its relatively fast development, is still so young in comparison to the powerhouse centres of New York and London. Nevertheless, with the ever present expectation that M+ will open in the West Kowloon Cultural District in the coming years; the very visible building works taking place at the old Central Police Station; and the recent closure of the Hong Kong Museum of Art for renovations, the art scene in Hong Kong appears to be on the verge of a further growth spurt.
"Earlier this month, The Mills Gallery, a new privately funded non-profit institution set to open in 2018, inaugurated their opening programme of pop-up exhibitions at The Annex in Sheung Wan. The Mills Gallery is certainly an exciting addition to the future cultural landscape of Hong Kong, but most interesting is the decision to embed the space within the local history of Hong Kong. Soon to be based in the old Nan Fung Textile Mill, The Mills Gallery aims to take as its focal point textile arts in order to interact with the space’s heritage as a central component in Hong Kong’s long history of textile manufacturing. With the context of Hong Kong firmly guiding their exhibition programming, the choice of preeminent local artist Leung Chi Wo as the subject of their initial show serves to clearly highlight The Mills Gallery’s unique focus.
"Born and raised in the city, Leung’s work often explores the urban space, colonial history, and collective memories of Hong Kong. A key figure in the city’s art world, having co-founded Para Site, another non-profit contemporary art space in 1996, and an exhibitor in the first pavilion at Venice Biennale in 2001, Leung’s name is becoming synonymous with Hong Kong’s burgeoning art culture. In recent years, the artist’s work has been shown internationally at the Asia Triennial Manchester (2014) and this year he was the subject of a solo exhibition, Press the Button…Leung Chi Wo: A Survey Exhibition, at OCAT, Shenzhen, China."