HON WALLACE CHUNG EXHIBITION
Exhibition Dates:July 1st to September 30th.
HON WALLACE CHUNG EXHIBITION
It has already been twenty years now since Hong Kong became part of China proper again. And to celebrate this, MoCA Shanghai – itself now twelve years old – is proud to present the Hon Wallace Chung Exhibition, Wallace’s first visual arts exhibition in Shanghai. He is a seeker of dreams whose journey began twenty-five years ago at Kai Tak Airport; he would go on to become a remarkable entertainer. Since then, he has been to a wide variety of cities and developed a remarkable individual philosophy, both of life and the world of visual arts. This exhibition is a reflection of that entire story, and it has one central theme: there is no history without people.
At the event’s main press conference, this past June 30, Wallace was invited to share his thoughts, perceptions and sources of inspiration. “A lot of people know about me and follow me through my appearances on TV, movies, and dance performances,” the star said, “but this solo show displays a side of me that’s deeper, one that will allow others to understand better how I perceive the world as a result of my life story.”
There was a bit of a pause after these words, as he thought back to all the hardships he had faced through the years. When he spoke again, though, a bright smile spread across his face. If he had to do it all again, he said, he would not alter his course one bit. He would charge forward to get his career off the ground, sticking to his guns, and that was something you could always see in Wallace, even from the beginning. “I want my life to reflect all the effort I put into it,” he said a few years ago, his characteristic perseverance in plain view even then.
Samuel Kung, Director of MoCA and himself a native of Shanghai who was raised in Hong Kong, is a strong advocate for the museum’s push to expand artistic and cultural exchanges and interactions between Hong Kong and mainland China. “Ten years ago, we ran a group exhibition called Reversing Horizons, as part of our tenth-year anniversary celebrations. Together with Wallace’s solo exhibition, the different forms and perspectives exhibited epitomize MoCA’s efforts to explore the influence Hong Kong’s handover has had on individuals and society at large.”
The word “HON” comes from the pronunciation of the character 汉 in Cantonese, and this pronunciation is very close to the “Hong” in “Hong Kong”. The “HON” in the exhibition’s title, therefore, is the core of the show’s theme, reflecting the positive ethics and continued prosperity of the Chinese people of Hong Kong, a well-suited name for a twentieth anniversary celebration of the official hand-over, and also a good name for integrating the essence of art into pop culture.
The current exhibition is composed of several panels, including “Impressive Hong Kong”, “Meet Yourself and Sing for Life”, “My Stories, Scenes, and Emotions ”, “Nourishing Light”, “The Eternal Print of Time”, and “Human Conditions in This Colorful World”, and in them Wallace mirrors the physical transformation of Hong Kong and other cities around the world, bringing the formation, emotions and dreams of entire generations to light through his virtuosic combination of augmented reality, video installations, and projection. A 2.5-meter-high projected video, the largest display at the event, is a vivid representation of the spectacular Hong-Kong cityscape, taking viewers on an trip through its evolution since its return to China on July 1, 1997. In Wallace’s exploratory works, the individual is connected to the greater society through the power of art, sparking a sense of empathy for society and culture as a whole.
MoCA Shanghai aims to continue developing its trademark “Cross and Plus” operational model and to foster the innovative drive it has been known for to date, both at home in China and around the world.
A multidisciplinary effort, the Hon Wallace Chung Exhibition is expected to push the envelope and break new ground in the contemporary art scene, and we have hope that we may be witnessing the emergence of an innovative synergy in which the flair of the artistic spirit blends with the energy and appeal of pop culture.