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Ho Sin Tung "Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong" tour

As part of Moderation(s), the year-long collaboration in 2013 between Witte de With, Rotterdam, and Spring Workshop, Hong Kong, curators-in-residence Latitudes have invited artist Ho Sin Tung to develop a day-long tour of Hong Kong retelling the city and artistic concerns through personal itineraries and waypoints. 

Ho Sin Tung's tour of Hong Kong revisits shooting spots (which are still accesible) from her video "Folie à deux" (2011), in which people read aloud their favorite passages with their back to the camera at the spots they chose. Through her reading-and-listening relationship with her readers, intimate and unique memories are created in the locations.


To complement the tour, please check the twitter and facebook and soundcloud posts via storify.

Follow on Twitter: #IncidentsOfTravel #Moderations



'Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong'
by Ho Sin Tung 

29 January 2013

In 2011, I made a video called “Folie à deux” (trailer here), named after a psychological term describing “a condition in which symptoms of a mental disorder, such as the same delusional beliefs or ideas, occur simultaneously in two individuals who share a close relationship or association”. The video is a simple depiction of 17 people reading aloud from a passage from their favourite book with their back to the camera, at different indoor and outdoor locations chosen by each reader


I know many people read, but only a few read books in a more personal way. The 17 people in “Folie à deux”  were carefully selected as I sensed something “passionate” about them and their reading habits. Despite being a friend of the readers, I have never really discussed literature with them

The places in which the readers chose to read are significant to each, and some locations I am unfamiliar with. However, through filming, listening to their reading, staring at their backs and spending some time with them before and after filming , stories and memories of the places are created. The video gets its name because, through reading, readers unwittingly unburden themselves - you can even see their fragility at that moment - and I am part of it

I intend to re-visit each location (marked in this map) and by revisiting, I hope to re-tell the stories of each reader and the books they chose. Most of the places included in the trip are actually art spaces and artists’ studio. But through their stories, each place becomes less general and more intimate.

 Meeting in Tai Po, New Territories, Hong Kong
Cho Yun Kei, a favourite noodle spot in Sin Tung's family, and a very popular destination in Tai Po and beyond.

Breakfast in Tai Po.

 Breakfast conversations. 


 Wandering through Tai Po.

  The framers Sin Tung works with in Tai Po.

Tai Po chatting. Artist Ho Sin Tung with Mimi Brown of Spring and Max Andrews of Latitudes.

 Observing a school where kids are practicing percussion instruments for Chinese New Year. Listen to the field recording here. Photo: Spring Workshop.

 The 'hood.
 Amazing family-run bean curd shop "Grandma Tofu Pudding" in Tai Po.

  Delightful Tai Po treats: warm bean curd flower (also called "soya bean custard" / "bean curd dessert" / "bean curd jelly") at "Grandma Tofu Pudding". 
 Beautiful greens in Tai Po Market.

At Lo Wu station, mainlanders openly smuggle things like baby milk powder from Hong Kong.


Sheung Shui dialogues: "...and that? What is it? / Hmmm, I don't know... / it seems difficult to eat! / Do you think it's sweet or salty? / It looks more like an offering or maybe used for New Year decoration / I think they look like Wallace & Gromit-like fruit!

 Queuing for lunch at the Guong Shing Ice Café in Sheung Shui.

Observing our surroundings while queuing up for lunch. Photo: Spring Workshop.

Across the street from the lunch break in Sheung Shui.
Lunch break: Pinneaple bun, a soft bun with sugar on top and a slice of butter inside.


Recurrent in the Hong Kong shopping landscape: foldable chairs and tables for sale.


 Sheung Shui citizen amongst noodles and eggs. 

Nam Sang Wai, New Territories, Hong Kong 
Reader: Wong Wai Yin
Book: "Thomas the Obscure" by Maurice Blanchot

Wong Wai Yin is a Hong Kong artist married to Kwan Sheung Chi, also an artist. They are well known for their collaborative work, including a long performance piece,“Everything Goes Wrong for the Poor Couple”. Their work often references literature and they have a wonderful selection of books in their home bookshelf.  

Wong Wai Yin brought me to Nam Sang Wai, a place I had never previously visited, and where they had their wedding photographs taken. There has been great discussion over the years about developing the wetland area of Nam San Wai - one of the most beautiful areas in Hong Kong attracting many film directors, “photographers” and their “models”.  

Near where we filmed Wong Wai Yin reading, another couple was also taking wedding photos. These things reoccur over and over again in the grassy fields!
Afternoon walk around Nam Sang Wai wetlands.

Exploring Nam Sang Wai wetlands. Photo: Spring Workshop.

  Abandoned house in Nam Sang Wai.

Photo: Spring Workshop

 Vegetation around Nam Sang Wai wetlands.

 For the unwanted visitors, a "scare cormorant" at Nam Sang Wai wetlands.

Further exploration around Nam Sang Wai wetlands.
Abandoned house, favourite spot for Hong Kong TV drama kidnapping scenes.


 From here, Sin Tung filmed Wong Wai Yin segment in the video "Folie à deux".

 View from the window.

A busy wedding photo location indeed!

ACO, Foo Tak Building, Wan Chai
Reader: Li João Ye Chun
Book: "Slam Dunk" by Takehiko Inoue  

The owner of the Fuk Tak Building in Wan Chai offers cheap rent to some Hong Kong artists. There is also an English bookshop called ACO on the first floor; not just a bookshop but also a multi-use space for meetings, screenings, and education.

João is a former work colleague whom I admire and is now studying for a PhD in Berlin. He is very left wing and intelligent, but never in an intimidating way. I expected him to read something very academic, but rather than choosing a writer like Kant or Hegel, he picked a Japanese comic book that he liked as a boy. It’s a comic book about basketball. 

He chose the last basketball match in the comic, and read aloud the count down of the match’s final seconds: 2 seconds, 0.8 seconds, 0.1 seconds, 0 seconds… 

He chose something from pop culture and found a philosophical aspect to it.

 ACO bookstore. Photo: Spring Workshop.


Outside Hong Kong Arts Centre 
Reader: Alice Ho
Book: "Cry, the Beloved Country" by Alan Paton

Alice has worked for the Goethe Institute in Hong Kong for many years. I first met her while exhibiting there. 

She is a very energetic person and full of stories, I had a really good time working with her. The book has always reminded her of her father’s death.  

While reading, a nearby street musician – unexpectedly - played sad music.


 
Alice Ho from the Goethe Institute.

 Crab buns dinner at "The 369 Shanghai Restaurant" in Wan Chai.



Ho Sin Tung (1986, Hong Kong) graduated from the Fine Arts Department of Chinese University in Hong Kong. She is currently a full-time artist and has a studio located in Fotan, Hong Kong. Sin Tung’s recent work predominantly uses pencil, graphite and watercolour in combination with found and ready-made images – such as stickers, maps, charts, rubber-stamps and timelines. These are reinterpreted to narrate stories of places, relationships and periods of time often within a considered, objective historical setting.  


Her most recent exhibitions include “Hong Kong Inter-vivos Film Festival” in Hanart TZ Gallery, Hong Kong (2012), “You Are Running A Business Called None Of My Business” in Abu Dhabi Art Fair (2011), “Folie à duex” in Experimenta, Hong Kong (2011) and “Don’t Shoot the Messenger” in Hanart TZ Gallery, Hong Kong (2010). She also participated in group shows like “Hong Kong Eye” in Saatchi Gallery, London (2012), “The 9th Shanghai Biennale” in the Shanghai Museum of Contemporary Art (2012), “Octopus” in Hanina Contemporary, Tel Aviv, Israel (2011), “Urban Utopia : if and only if” in Goethe Institute, Hong Kong (2011), “Drawing Out Conversation : Taipei” in Nanhai Gallery, Taipei (2010).

More information via Hanart TZ Gallery, Kong Kong.




Related contents:
Soundscapes of "Incidents of Travel";
Storify "Incidents of Travel";
Flickr album of the four tours of "Incidents of Travel";
'Incidents of travel' tour with Nadim Abbas on 19 January 2013;
'Incidents of Travel' tour with Yuk King Tan on 24 January 2013;
'Incidents of Travel' tour with Samson Young on 7 February 2013.

All photos: Latitudes | www.lttds.org (except when noted otherwise in the photo caption)

Creative Commons Licence
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Stacks Image 39


"Temple and Feng Shui Tour", a guided walk around Hong Kong Island & Kowloon

Alongside the four tours led by Hong Kong artists Nadim Abbas, Yuk King Tan, Ho Sin Tung, and Samson Young, Latitudes is also venturing into the city, researching around local forms of vernacular collection display and eccentric attractions. This encompasses museum-like retail spaces, or ‘marginal’ sculptural displays, as well as joining pre-existing tours.

The "Temple and Feng Shui Tour" that we joined on the 22nd January around Hong Kong Island & Kowloon began by looking at Norman Foster's Hong Kong HSBC building in Admiralty, built according to Feng Shui principles.

 The HSBC building has a large wide-open area (i.e. the Statue Square) in front of it, with no other large buildings blocking the view of Victoria Harbour – thus a big plus point for good feng shui.

Natural sunlight makes its way inside the building via a movable platform regulated by a computer which directs sunlight towards giant mirrors at the top of the atrium.

ATMs in the atrium.

Left lion statue (focus of Yuk King Tan's 'Scavanger' (2008) video) protecting the entrance of the building.
Two escalators access the building; three after the first floor (4 is a superstitious number as, when pronounced in Cantonese it sounds like the word for "death", hence the building doesn't have floors 4, 14 or 24).

I.M. Pei's Bank of China Tower has notoriously bad Feng Shui, nearby buildings try to compensate with shield-like shapes and curved corners.

View from 43rd floor of Bank of China Tower towards West Kowloon.

Wong Tai Sin temple (Sik Sik Yuen) where people worship Taoism, Buddhism and Confucianism.

Main altar to worship Master Wong Tai Sin.

 Incense sticks and offerings to Master Wong Tai Sin.



Nan Liam garden built in the style of a Tang Garden.
 
Blue Pond in the Nan Liam garden.
 
Pavilion of absolute perfection at the Nan Liam garden, Diamond Hill, Kowloon.
 
The Rockery gallery in Nan Liam garden, "a collection of rocks excavated from the Red River in its stretch through Dahua County in Guangxi Province, China."

Chi Lin Nunnery in Diamond Hill, Kowloon, across the Nan Liam garden.
The Buddhist temple at the Chi Lin Nunnery.
 
Nan Lian garden and Buddhist temple at the Chi Lin Nunnery.  
View of the Japanese-style pagoda from the Buddhist temple at the Chi Lin Nunnery. 

Follow the project: #IncidentsOfTravel #Moderations

To complement the tour, please check the archive with tweets, sound recordings and more.

Moderation(s) is a year-long programme occurring throughout 2013 between Witte de With, Rotterdam, and Spring Workshop, Hong Kong.  



All photos: Latitudes | www.lttds.org (except when noted otherwise in the photo caption)
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Nadim Abbas' "Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong" public tour

As part of Moderation(s), the year-long collaboration in 2013 between Witte de With, Rotterdam, and Spring Workshop, Hong Kong, curators-in-residence Latitudes have invited artist Nadim Abbas (Hong Kong, 1980) to develop a public tour of Hong Kong on Saturday, 19 January.

The day-long itinerary plots a course through a handful of sites in the city, which have in one way or another influenced the form, content, and processes of Nadim’s practice. Since Hong Kong has been his home for most of his life, some of these places have been all too familiar to him since childhood. This project now offers him the opportunity to spring fresh surprises on unsuspecting “tourists”, and possibly on himself as well.  

To complement the tour, check our twitter, facebook and SoundCloud, as well as the text "The Pathology of Hong Kong in the work of artist Nadim Abbas", an account of the tour by Zoe Li on ArtInfo.com (includes a slideshow).

Follow future events on Twitter: #IncidentsOfTravel #Moderations


Nadim Abbas introduces his tour to 16 participants in the Wah Fu Estate, Aberdeen.

Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong
by Nadim Abbas
19 January 2013

Although I usually speak about my work in terms of images and the imaginary, there is always an equally important component that describes an encounter with externalspace. By that, I am referring to the heterogenous space in which we live, which we rarely have time to reflect upon except in a state of distraction. But just because there is no time to reflect doesn’t mean that these spaces don’t affect our thoughts, subtly penetrating the internal space of our imagination; in some cases to the point where one can no longer distinguish between the internal and the external, or between dream and reality. It is these moments of uncertainty that interest me the most, and which, in my own experience transforms art-making into a perpetual balancing act on the threshold between banality and oblivion.

The itinerary outlined below plots a course through a handful of sites in Hong Kong, which has in one way or another influenced the form, content, and processes that define my practice. Since Hong Kong has been my home for most of my life, some of these places have been all too familiar to me since childhood; waiting for the right opportunity to spring fresh surprises on this unsuspecting tourist.


Wah Kwai Estate block.


 
Wah Kwai Estate water feature (with no water).
Around the Wah Kwai Estate. Photo: Heman Chong.

Waterfall Bay Park, Aberdeen, Hong Kong


Waterside "resort" used by the local community to swim and exercise by the side of the South China Sea.

Waterfall Bay is said to have attracted Portuguese and British ships to its shores to collect fresh water from its namesake as far back as the 16th century. Today, about 30m from the falls lie the ruins of a WW2 military pillbox and petrol powered searchlight referred to officially as “Beach Defense Units” by Allied troops during the Japanese siege of Hong Kong in 1941. A few minutes walk from the rocky beach along the coastline, residents of a nearby public housing estate have over the years converted what looks like a disused pier into a veritable seaside resort for the local community. Despite numerous government placards warning against swimming in ungazetted waters, residents eager for an early morning dip in the South China Sea have gone so far as to add ad hoc steps, pool ladders and even freshwater facilities for an after-swim wash. 


 Tour guide of the day, artist Nadim Abbas. Photo: Trevor Young.


 Looking towards Lamma Island from Waterfall Bay Park.

For the less adventurous, there are shelters and seating areas where the elderly gather every day to play chess/cards, chat or simply watch the boats passing by. But perhaps the most endearing aspect of this site is the hundreds of porcelain statues of various Chinese deities clustered along the hillside and shoreline. I don’t know what started this particular outdoor collection; perhaps a makeshift shrine to protect local fisherman, or to commemorate a traumatic event? Or because it is considered unlucky to throw away statues of deities, they were quietly transferred to this idyllic setting instead. Needless to say, this latter aspect lends the whole site, already steeped in history, with a certain sacred quality. In a city like Hong Kong, where the regulation of land use usually falls into the purview of one-dimensional governmental policies or market-driven real estate developments, such elaborate appropriations of public space are a rarity. They represent in my mind a kind of fragile heterotopia or an unwitting piece of relational art par excellence. 


Offerings to deities, Waterfall Bay Park, Aberdeen.


Hillside covered with porcelain statues of various Chinese deities. 
and more... Photo: Nadim Abbas


...some with their own shelters.


The waterfall of Waterfall Bay Park!


 Looking the other direction an abandoned WWII beach-defence unit.


Inside the WWII beach defense unit.


 Exploring the bay.


Nadim Abbas, Cataract (Iguazu Falls), 2011. Kinetic lightbox with Duratran print and aluminium window frames. 70(h) x 85(w) x 15(d) cm. Courtesy of the artist.

 Walking through the Wah Fu Estate in Pok Fu Lam. Photo: Heman Chong.


 Wah Fu Estate laundry.


Photo: Trevor Yeung.

Concrete Islands, Eastern Street, Hong Kong

My fascination with marginal spaces in the urban landscape began with this network of concrete islands that are located beneath the Connaught Road West flyovers next to the Western Harbour Tunnel (WHT) entrance. It is a site that I regularly pass by on bus rides to Kowloon side, and it became the model for a 46sq/m sandscape that was built-in a warehouse space as part of an installation titled Afternoon in Utopia(2012). 

Underneath the Connaught Road West flyover. Photo: Heman Chong.

Photo: Trevor Yeung.

Nadim Abbas, Afternoon in Utopia, 2012. Mixed media installation (sand, concrete, pigment prints, painted wall text, red-tinted lighting). Dimensions variable (sandscape coverage approx 46 sq/m). Courtesy of the artist.

One of the distinguishing characteristics of this particular set of islands is the uniform grids of solid concrete trapezoidal prisms that were set into the ground either by government departments or the government-franchised company that operates the WHT. The usual explanation for this strangely monumental arrangement of blocks is to discourage the homeless population from sleeping on the islands. I see it also as a way for the authorities to mark their territory, much like a dog urinates on a lamppost. A couple of questions remain: are concrete islands private or public spaces? What are the laws and jurisdictions that regulate the use of these spaces? Much like the status of homeless people, it seems that these anomalous zones occupy a certain legal grey area, perpetually overlooked because they exist on the boundaries of function and visibility.1
 
Photo: Heman Chong.


Lunch break at the West Kowloon Waterfront Promenade, site of the West Kowloon Cultural District development, to host the future M+, a museum for visual culture to open in 2017 with a focus on 20th and 21st-century art, design, architecture and moving image.
 Hong Kong skyline from West Kowloon Waterfront Promenade along the Victoria Harbour.

Man Cheong Street Housing Complex, Jordan, Kowloon

As we all know, Hong Kong is one of the most densely populated cities in the world. This is typically illustrated via descriptions of crowded streets in districts like Causeway Bay, Sham Shui Po and Mong Kok, or of the ubiquitous high-rise public housing estates around the territory. This latter aspect is indicative of the tendency, which began under colonial rule, to build upwards rather than outwards to meet the demands of a growing population. Ackbar Abbas, in Hong Kong: Culture and the Politics of Disappearance (1997) writes:

"Hyperdensity is partly the result of limited space, but it is also the result of how this limited space could be exploited for economic gain. On the one hand, the colonial government deals with the problem of hyperdensity by constructing cheap housing estates. On the other hand, the government policy of releasing crown land bit by bit at strategic moments and its prerogative, which it duly exercises, of designating land as rural (where strict building restrictions apply) or urban, ensure that building space remains scarce and property prices remain high."


Man Cheong Street Housing Complex, a case study in hyperdensity. 


Photo: Trevor Yeung. 


 Stuck in traffic conversations (Left: Mimi Brown and right: Nadim Abbas). 


Although the experience of living in a hyperdense milieu is often talked about disparagingly, it has also been argued that the close proximity between the commercial and the residential actually encourages diverse, dynamic communities and a vibrant street culture (in contrast to the bland homogeneity of suburban sprawl). 


  
In the early 90s, a group of Japanese architects conducted an in-depth survey of the city, extolling the virtues of hyperdense living, and going so far as to liken this still existing complex of apartment blocks off Man Cheong Street (another regular sight for me on weekly cross-harbour bus rides) to the infamous (now demolished) Kowloon Walled City:

Circulation inside the apparently solid block is not horizontal but vertical. Each slab-building is actually a grouping of towers, separated by slender slots. [...] Within these slots of space, like everywhere else in Hong Kong, however, residents have built illegal elements. Thus, although at first glance this highly ordered building complex looks nothing like the chaotic Walled City in Kowloon, it shares with it many features, such as its density of use and its vertical circulation.2

 
 Wiring, piping, washing and air-conditioning in the Man Cheong Street Housing Complex.


My own concerns regarding the phenomenon of hyperdensity have to do with the kinds of sub-cultures, or modes of (anti)sociability that emerge as a result of extended inhabitation. This has translated into research and immersion in otakuculture, which carries with it stereotypes of socially inept male subjects walled up alone in their apartments; as if the dense accumulation of cramped interior space encourages introversion or the vacuum of mental space itself. Interestingly, the Chinese word for otakuis宅男 (zaak naam), where is short for housing (complex) or tenement (block), and means male.


 Nadim Abbas, I Would Prefer Not To (宅男) #9, 2009. Digital C-print photograph, 64 x 42cm. Courtesy of the artist.



Shanghai Street, Yau Ma Tei.

The final leg of this tour takes us down a number of well-known streets in Hong Kong, which are prime examples of the kind of vibrant street culture that characterizes a hyperdense city like Hong Kong. They also provide a historical cross-section of architectural styles in the region, from pre-WW1 “Verandah” type buildings to modern-day podium towers. Each street is known for its specific cluster of specialized shops and/or stalls. Tung Choi Street, for instance, is affectionately known as “Goldfish Street” since it is almost exclusively lined with pet shops and aquarium suppliers. My choice of these 3 streets, in particular, reflect my own interests as a consumer as much as a producer. In fact, it is often the case that I get ideas via shopping, or window shopping - there is always an excuse to pick up another piece of useless junk... 


  Photo: Heman Chong.
 
Shanghai Street, Yau Ma Tei, Kowloon(Kitchen and restaurant supplies)


Meat cleavers and teapots around Shanghai St.


Pots and pans galore.
Passing by the Kowloon Wholesale Yau Ma Tei Fruit Market.

Durian fruit in the Kowloon Wholesale Fruit Market.
 
Tung Choi “Goldfish” Street, Prince Edward, Kowloon(Pet shops, aquarium supplies, bicycle shops)


Goldfish of all size and variety sold at Tung Choi “Goldfish” Street.


Aquarium supplies of all persuasions.

 Aquarium supplies to decorate fish-tanks.


Mini red, blue and white lobsters, Tung Choi “Goldfish” Street. 


Nadim Abbas, Marine Lover, 2011. Mixed media  (Polyresin coral casts, fluorescent black lights, plywood, door frames, mirror), 300(h) x 100(w) x 1900(d) cm. Courtesy of the artist.

Ap Liu Street, Shum Shui Po, Kowloon(Electronic components, consumer electronics, camera accessories, hi-fi & AV equipment, hand/power tools & accessories, flea market)


Watches, lighting fixtures, cables, transformers, telephone chargers, wires, batteries, and all kinds of other hardware supplies.


 ...as well as fishing nets

...all sorts of magnets. Photo: Trevor Yeung.


...and mountains of second-hand drills in the Ap Liu Street market.

1 In his visual essay, On Marginal Spaces: Artefacts of the Mundane (2011), Peter Benz devotes a whole section to the discussion of concrete islands. For a fictional account, see J. G. Ballard’s Concrete Island (1974), a kind of Robinson Crusoe for the twentieth century.

2 See architectural journal, SD (Space Design) Hong Kong: Alternative Metropolis No. 330, March 1992.

 


 
Nadim Abbas (Hong Kong, 1980) is a Hong Kong-based installation artist. His work explores the intricate role that memory-images play in the intersection between mind and matter. This has culminated in the construction of complex set pieces, where objects exist in an ambiguous relationship with their own image, and bodies succumb to the seduction of space. 


Abbas studied sculpture (B.A.) at the Chelsea College of Art and Comparative Literature (M.Phil.) at the University of Hong Kong. He currently holds teaching posts at the Hong Kong Art School and the City University of Hong Kong. Notable exhibitions and projects include: “No Longer Human”, Osage Kwun Tong, Hong Kong (2012); “Marine Lover”, ARTHK11, Hong Kong (2011); “Cataract”, EXPERIMENTA & Gallery Exit, Hong Kong, “FAX” Para/Site, Hong Kong (both 2010); and “Louis Vuitton: A Passion for Creation – The Hong Kong Seven”, Hong Kong Museum of Art, Hong Kong (2009).  

Related contents:
Soundscapes of "Incidents of Travel";
Social media archive of "Incidents of Travel";
Flickr album of the four tours of "Incidents of Travel";
'Incidents of Travel' tour with Yuk King Tan on 24 January 2013;
'Incidents of Travel' tour with Ho Sin Tung on 29 January 2013;
'Incidents of Travel' tour with Samson Young on 7 February 2013.



All photos: Latitudes | www.lttds.org (Except noted otherwise in the photo caption)

Creative Commons Licence
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Stacks Image 39


First week of the "Moderation(s)" residency at Spring Workshop, Hong Kong

View of Hong Kong from Victoria Peak.

Wall text at Spring Workshop introducing Latitudes' month residency.

Moderation(s) team. Left to right: Athena Wu and Mimi Brown (Spring Workshop), Samuel Saelemakers and Defne Ayas (Witte de With, Rotterdam), artist and 'Moderation(s)' curator Heman Chong and Mariana Cánepa Luna and Max Andrews (Latitudes). Photo: Spring Workshop.

 Lunch break at Spring Workshop.

As part of Latitudes' 'Moderation(s)' research residency in Hong Kong we will be looking into how the city is articulated through specialist tours and attractions – such as self-made or esoteric museums, museum-like retail spaces, or “marginal” sculptural displays – both phenomena at the edge of the cultural, tourism and leisure sectors. Our first visit took us to the Hobby and Toy Museum in Yau Ma Tei, Kowloon (below).

  Hobby and Toy Museum entrance in Yau Ma Tei, Kowloon.

  Hobby and Toy Museum galleries at Yau Ma Tei, Kowloon.

 Dinner at Lin Heung Tea House in Wan Chai.

 Divinities shop around Shanghai Road in Yau Ma Tei, Kowloon.


'The Palazzo' residential complex in Fo Tan.


 View from Leung Chi Wo and Sara Wong's studio in the Wah Luen Industrial Centre.


MTR station Fo Tan.
 
French toast breakfast at Leung Chi Wo and Sara Wong's studio in Fo Tan.
  
Working table of Ho Sin Tung's studio at the Worldwide Industrial Centre in Fo Tan.
 
Detail of Ho Sin Tung's studio at the Worldwide Industrial Centre in Fo Tan.


Detail of Ho Sin Tung's studio at the Worldwide Industrial Centre in Fo Tan.

Studying the map of Fotanian Open Studios 2013.

 
Fo Tan apartments looming over the forested hills.
 
Fo Tan industrial area.


On 15 January we made day to the New Territories to explore birds and biodiversity. Here's the bird list from the day: 

Eurasian Wigeon, Mallard, Northern Shoveler, Northern Pintail, Eurasian Teal, Tufted Duck, Little Grebe, Great Crested Grebe, Oriental Stork, Black-faced Spoonbill, Yellow Bittern, Black-crowned Night Heron, Chinese Pond Heron, Grey Heron, Purple Heron, Great Egret, Intermediate Egret, Little Egret, Great Cormorant, Western Osprey, Black Kite, Eastern Marsh Harrier, Crested Goshawk, Eastern Buzzard, Eastern Imperial Eagle, Peregrine Falcon, White-breasted Waterhen, Common Moorhen, Eurasian Coot, Black-winged Stilt, Pied Avocet, Grey-headed Lapwing, Pacific Golden Plover, Grey Plover, Little Ringed Plover, Kentish Plover, Lesser Sand Plover, Greater Sand Plover, Greater Painted-Snipe, Pintail/Swinhoe's Snipe, Common Snipe, Black-tailed Godwit, Whimbrel, Eurasian Curlew, Spotted Redshank, Common Redshank, Marsh Sandpiper, Common Greenshank, Green Sandpiper, Wood Sandpiper, Terek Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper, Great Knot, Red-necked Stint, Temminck's Stint, Dunlin, Black-headed Gull, Saunders's Gull, Black-tailed Gull, "kamtschatschensis" Mew Gull, Caspian Gull, Heuglin's Gull, Caspian Tern, Domestic Pigeon, Spotted Dove, Asian Koel, Plaintive Cuckoo, House Swift, White-throated Kingfisher, Black-capped Kingfisher, Common Kingfisher, Pied Kingfisher, Grey-chinned Minivet, Scarlet Minivet, Long-tailed Shrike, Ashy Drongo, Azure-winged Magpie, Eurasian Magpie, Collared Crow, Large-billed Crow, Grey-headed Canary-Flycatcher, Cinereous Tit, Yellow-cheeked Tit, Red-whiskered Bulbul, Chinese Bulbul, Chestnut Bulbul, Red-rumped Swallow, Asian Stubtail, Dusky Warbler, Pallas's Leaf Warbler, Yellow-browed Warbler, Yellow-bellied Prinia, Plain Prinia, Common Tailorbird, Rufous-capped Babbler, Masked Laughingthrush, Silver-eared Leiothrix, Japanese White-eye, Velvet-fronted Nuthatch, Crested Myna, Red-billed Starling, Black-collared Starling, Blue Whistling Thrush, Grey-backed Thrush, Common Blackbird, Pale Thrush, Red-flanked Bluetail, Oriental Magpie Robin, Daurian Redstart, Stejneger's Stonechat, Red-throated Flycatcher, Orange-bellied Leafbird, Fork-tailed Sunbird, Eurasian Tree Sparrow, Scaly-breasted Munia, "taivana" Eastern Yellow Wagtail, "macronyx" Eastern Yellow Wagtail, Grey Wagtail, White Wagtail, Richard's Pipit, Olive-backed Pipit, Crested Bunting, Chestnut-eared Bunting, Black-faced Bunting.

Kam Tin river, looking for Grey-headed Lapwings.
 
Entrance to the Mai Po Nature Reserve.


Mai Po Marshes, the scrape.
 
Gate 107 through border fence towards the mangroves and Deep Bay, Mai Po Marshes.


 Deep Bay (mudflat).
 
 Fiddler crabs and mudskipper, Deep Bay, Mai Po Marshes.


 Chinese Pond Heron and Great Egret, Deep Bay, Mai Po Marshes.


 1km of floating boardwalks, Deep Bay, Mai Po Marshes.


 'The Scrape', Mai Po Marshes. 


 Southern Mai Po Marshes.


We later visited Long Valley, the largest remaining tract of cultivated land in the Sheung Shui of the New Territories. Here a soundscape with roosting Black-Collared Starlings and Crested Mynas, and a passing train.


Cultivated fields of lettuce at Long Valley.


 Mix of lowland, cultivation, abandoned land and fishponds at Long Valley. 


 Farm worker collecting lettuce at Long Valley.


Packing greens, Long Valley.
 
Long Valley between baskets and sky-scrapers.
 
Very green lettuce, Long Valley.
Highly equipped bird photographers.


Hong Kong Museum of Medical Sciences in the Mid-levels of Hong Kong.


Visit starts here, don't get distracted.


 Model of Kowloon tower block which suffered the worst outbreak of SARS in 2003.


Display of the Old Pathological Institute. "Medical students" c. 1912 examining rats for Bubonic plague.


Transitions in Midwifery display.


 In the basement: traditional Chinese Herbalist shop 'Cun An Tan' Equipment.


 Model of ear acupuncture points.


"Inoculation of calf with cowpox to produce vaccines against Smallpox" exhibit.


Flagstaff House Museum of Tea Ware in Hong Kong Park.


Display of tea pots introducing the history of Chinese tea drinking, from the Tang dynasty (618 – 907) to the 20th century.


Introducing the various styles in making tea beverage practiced in China at different times of the day and in different geographical points.


 Compressed tea cake packaging.


All photos: Latitudes | www.lttds.org (except when noted otherwise in the photo caption)
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Interview with Steven ten Thije, Research Curator, Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, sixth in the #OpenCurating research series

Play Van Abbe, Part 2: Time Machine (10 April–24 September 2010). Curated by Steven ten Thije (guest curator) and Diana Franssen, Curator and Head of Research. Exhibition view of: Raum der Gegenwart, (1930) 2009 scale 1:1, various materials. Installation: 430 x 860 x 610 cm. Collection Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, The Netherlands. Photo: Peter Cox, Eindhoven, The Netherlands.

As Research Curator at the Van Abbemuseum, in Eindhoven, the Netherlands, Steven ten Thije is part of the team of one the first public museums for contemporary art to be established in Europe. Under the directorship of Charles Esche since 2004, the museum has defined itself through "an experimental approach towards art’s role in society", where "openness, hospitality and knowledge exchange are important". Ten Thije is also a lecturer and researcher at the University of Hildesheim, Germany, where he is studying for a doctorate in the genealogical analysis of the exhibition curator. He was co-curator of the Spirits of Internationalism (Van Abbemuseum, 2012), and alongside Esche, with curators Christiane Berndes, Annie Fletcher, and Diana Franssen, he was guest curator of Play Van Abbe (2011). Subtitled The museum in the 21st Century, this was a four-part multifaceted programme of exhibitions, research and events in which the Van Abbemuseum reflected on the meaning and role of the art museum. Using its collection to articulate questions about the public's reaction to art and its contexts, the Van Abbemuseum probed its own history and purpose alongside how cultural production has reflected the social and political dynamics of the last twenty years.





ABOUT #OPENCURATING

Drawing on the emerging practices of so-called 'Open Journalism' – which seek to better collaborate with and use the ability of anyone to publish and share#OpenCurating is a research project that investigates how contemporary art projects may function beyond the traditional format of exhibition-and-catalogue. #OpenCurating is concerned with new forms of interaction between publics – whether online followers or physical visitors – with artworks and their production, display and discursive context.

The project is articulated around a series of ten new interviews with curators, artists, writers and online strategists published as a free digital edition [read here the published ones so far], a Twitter discussion moderated around the hashtag #OpenCurating and a finissage event in Barcelona (date TBA).

#OpenCurating is a research project by Latitudes produced through La Capella. BCN Producció 2012 of the Institut de Cultura de Barcelona. 










Content partners: Walker Art Center

 




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Latitudes residency in Spring Workshop, Hong Kong, 7 January–10 February 2013, as part of the year-long programme Moderation(s)


Moderation(s) is a year-long programme occurring throughout 2013 between Witte de With, Rotterdam, and Spring, Hong Kong. It's ‘moderator’, Singaporean visual artist and writer Heman Chong, will steer a program involving more than fifty artists, curators and writers, and engender a conference, three exhibitions, three residencies and a book of short stories

Moderation(s) begins by hosting the Barcelona-based curatorial office Latitudes for a month residency in Hong Kong (7 January–10 February 2013). During this time, Latitudes will investigate the urban territory from a curatorial perspective by looking into how it is articulated through specialist tours and attractions, both phenomena at the edge of the cultural, tourism and leisure sectors

As part of this – and elaborating on the approach of their recent project Incidents of Travel [see here] at Casa del Lago, Mexico City – the duo invited Hong Kong-based artists Nadim Abbas, Yuk King Tan, Ho Sin Tung and Samson Young to develop day-long tours, thus retelling the city and each participant’s artistic concerns through personal itineraries and waypoints. Alongside these ventures into the city, research around local forms of vernacular collection display and eccentric attractions will be made. This will encompass self-made or esoteric museums, museum-like retail spaces, or ‘marginal’ sculptural displays.


 Incidents of Travel Mexico City. Day 3: Tour with Diego Berruecos. Visiting the Biblioteca Nacional Lerdo de Tejada. Photo: Eunice Adorno.

In October 2012, a working group of artists, curators, and
Witte de With staff members came together in Rotterdam. Comprised of A Constructed World (Geoff Lowe and Jacqueline Riva), Nadim Abbas, Defne Ayas, Mimi Brown, Amira Gad, Natasha Ginwala, Latitudes (Max Andrews and Mariana Cánepa Luna), Michael Lee, Christina Li, Pages (Nasrin Tabatabai and Babak Afrassiabi), Vivian Sky Rehberg, and Samuel Saelemakers, the group took part in a two-day workshop developed by Heman Chong to explore and identify materials that will drive the content of Moderation(s). The first project to surface from this workshop is Bibliotheek (Library), a list of books identified by the group to function both as a bibliography for Moderation(s), as well as a planned physical library that will be installed both at Witte de With and Spring.


In speaking about this project, moderator Heman Chong proposes “to make ‘soft’ the practices of both artist and curator, so that one becomes easily soluble in the other, while retaining their unique forms and patterns of working. The participants will be encouraged to indulge in the pleasures of exchanging knowledge and tools without any pressure to collaborate.” 


The 2013 programme includes: 

Latitudeswill produce Incidents of Travel(Spring, January 2013), for which the duo will invite four artists in Hong Kong to develop day-long tours that articulate the city and their artistic practice through routes and waypoints. Artist Michael Lee will join the project to develop a series of maps and charts that trace the larger constellation of Moderation(s). Performances by artists including Benjamin Seror, Anthony Marcellini, Koki Tanaka, and many more will occur in and around Rotterdam inA Thing At A Time (Witte de With, April 2013). In June, fifteen artists, curators, and writers will produce short stories during A Fictional Residency (Spring, June 2013). Additionally, a conference in four parts led by various moderators involving twelve guests will be staged (Witte de With, October 2013). A Constructed World will produce The Social Contract (Spring, October 2013), a work in which audiences are asked to sign a legal contract restraining them from speaking about what they saw inside the exhibition. The Part In The Story Where A Part Becomes A Part Of Something Else (Witte de With, December 2013), a large-scale show mounted at Witte de With that will sublimate many of the conversations and gestures found within Moderation(s)


Twitter: #Moderations / @WdWcentrum / @SpringHK / @HemanChong / @LTTDS

Moderation(s) is initiated by Witte de With’s Director Defne Ayas and Spring Workshop Founder Mimi Brown.









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"books_expanded_field: An Interview with Badlands Unlimited", fifth interview of the #OpenCurating research

'How To Download A Boyfriend' group exhibition as interactive e-book, 58 pp (Badlands Unlimited, 2012).

Founded in 2010 by artist Paul Chan – best known for his cycle The 7 Lights (2005–8) and Waiting for Godot in New Orleans, realised in collaboration with Creative Time and The Classical Theatre of Harlem – Badlands Unlimited is a New York-based publishing house whose motto is “books in an expanded field”. Its publications and editions in paper or digital forms (e-books for iPad or Kindle) acknowledge that “historical distinctions between books, files, and artworks are dissolving rapidly”. Badlands aspires to reimagine the activity of reading as it encompasses the artist book, choreography and poetry, 3D, experimental typography, historical translations as well as the format of the group show.



ABOUT #OPENCURATING

Drawing on the emerging practices of so-called 'Open Journalism' – which seek to better collaborate with and use the ability of anyone to publish and share#OpenCurating is a research project that investigates how contemporary art projects may function beyond the traditional format of exhibition-and-catalogue. #OpenCurating is concerned with new forms of interaction between publics – whether online followers or physical visitors – with artworks and their production, display and discursive context.

The project is articulated around a series of ten new interviews with curators, artists, writers and online strategists published as a free digital edition [read here the published ones so far], a Twitter discussion moderated around the hashtag #OpenCurating and a finissage event in Barcelona (date TBA).

#OpenCurating was awarded the first BCN Producció 2012 Research Grant of the Institut de Cultura de Barcelona. 










Content partners: Walker Art Center

 




Creative Commons Licence
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Stacks Image 39


The Indianapolis Museum of Art's transparency initiatives

Part of our interest in the #OpenCurating research we are currently carrying out is to look at how museums and curatorial departments are engaging in new ways with their audiences and the means through which "open" initiatives are being promoted and implemented in exhibition-making and via other types of programming.

The Indianapolis Museum of Art has created two really dynamic initiatives which promote transparency throughout the museum's operations: a real-time statistics "Dashboard" including data such as the museum's energy consumption, works of art currently on display, the value of the museum's endowment, their operating expenses, average time of visits to the website, etc. 

The tool was implemented in 2008 and is the brainchild of museum director Maxwell L. Anderson, an active advocate of implementing new media technologies to advance public interest in art. 



The data can be compared to previous years (stats for 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011), filtered by museum departments (Buildings, Education, Conservation, Curatorial, Finance...) as well as by topics (Art, Greening the IMA, Attendance...). 


 Dashboard data of the curatorial.

However admirable this tool is, the curatorial dashboard falls rather short on the depth of information, only offering statistics for the "number of acquisitions" and the "number of works with gaps in WWII-Era Provenance". They do not reveal full data sets of their departmental operational budget, for instance. This might show there is still some resistance to really open up  to show other kind of costs (shipping, insurance, exhibition display, fees paid to artists (or not?)...) or even interesting insights such as (air)miles travelled by the curatorial staff, or the amount of paper used for their publications, just to mention a few. 

Some of these topics (how to articulate institutions and organisations complex needs in seeming transparent, responsible and benevolent) were addressed in Latitudes' 2008 exhibition "Greenwashing. Environment: Perils, Promises and Perplexities" (Archive Books, 2008) and in its catalogue essay "Shades of Green: a conversation between the curators", as well as in the essay by Stephanie Smith "'Alas for the dreams of a Dreamer!': Art Museums and Sustainability" included in the Latitudes-edited publication "Land, Art: A Cultural Ecology Handbook' (RSA, 2006).

A second initiative we find quite relevant is the "Deaccessioning database", which classifies pieces that have been deaccessioned at the museum since 2007 (following IMA's policy, see pdf here), explaining provenance, the reasons for its deaccession, listing the recipient and the day of sale, etc.
 Deaccessioned Artworks page www.imamuseum.org/art/collections/deaccession

Take for instance "Houses in the Snow", a 1929 canvas by Maurice de Vlaminck sold via Sotheby's in 2009 for $173700; or the 1889 suite of prints "Les Misères Humaines" by Gaugin, which were transferred to the Musée de Pont-Aven in 2009. Fascinating and revealing, isn't it?


Deaccessioned file for Maurice de Vlaminck's 1929 canvas.



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"Democratizando la sociedad informacional", cuarta entrevista de #OpenCurating con Daniel G. Andújar


Daniel G. Andújar, Democraticemos la democracia, “A vuelo de pájaro, Barcelona–Badalona”, 22 de mayo 2012. 
Cortesía de Daniel G. Andújar estudio / TTTP.

La práctica del artista visual, activista en la red y teórico del arte Daniel G. Andújar cuestiona, mediante la ironía y la utilización de estrategias de presentación de las nuevas tecnologías de la comunicación, las promesas democráticas e igualitarias de estos medios y critica la voluntad de control que esconden detrás de su aparente transparencia. En 1996 Andújar funda la empresa virtual Technologies To The People (TTTP) “dedicada a acercar los avances de la tecnología a los más desfavorecidos, una especie de imprecisa corporación que reproducía el lenguaje disuasorio, los tics de identidad y los arquetipos visuales asociados a las compañías comerciales del ámbito digital”.

"Democratizando la sociedad informacional" es la cuarta entrevista en la investigación #OpenCurating – leer la primera con el equipo del Walker Art Center aquí (inglés), la segunda con Ethel Baraona Pohl (español e inglés); y"Itinerarios transversales" con Sònia López y Anna Ramos del Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona (MACBA).



El documento se puede visualizar en ISSUU, y también se puede descargar como pdf desde la web del proyecto y por de ahí leerlo en vuestro iPad (visualización optimizada para la pantalla Retina).
 

 
ACERCA DE #OPENCURATING

Partiendo de las preocupaciones exploradas por Latitudes durante el proyecto editorial realizado durante 'The Last Newspaper' (New Museum, Nueva York, 2010), y basándose en las prácticas del denominado 'periodismo abierto' (Open Journalism) – que trata de mejorar la colaboración y utilizar la habilidad de cualquier persona para publicar y compartir – #OpenCurating es un proyecto de investigación que indaga en las nuevas formas de interacción entre los públicos – sean seguidores en red o visitantes físicos – con obras de arte, su producción, exhibición y su contexto discursivo.

El proyecto se estructura a partir de tres elementos: una serie de diez entrevistas a comisarios, artistas, escritores y expertos web publicada en una edición digital gratuita (véase aquí), una discusión en Twitter moderada por el hashtag #OpenCurating y por último, un evento (fecha por determinar).

#OpenCurating es el proyecto ganador de la primera convocatoria BCN Producció 2012 en la categoría de investigación, otorgada por el Institut de Cultura de Barcelona.

Síguenos en Twitter: #OpenCurating
 






 
   

Content partners : Walker Art Center






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Stacks Image 39


"Itinerarios transversales", tercera entrevista de la investigación #OpenCurating, con Sònia López y Anna Ramos del Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona (MACBA)

El estudio radiofónico de Ràdio Web MACBA en el Auditorio del MACBA. 
Foto: Gemma Planell / MACBA, 2012. Some rights reserved.

La entrevista "Itinerarios transversales" con Sònia López y Anna Ramos del Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona (MACBA), es la tercera en la investigación #OpenCurating – leer la primera con el equipo del Walker Art Center aquí (inglés), y la segunda con Ethel Baraona Pohl aquí (en inglés aquí).

El Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona (MACBA) abrió sus puertas en el Raval de Barcelona en el 1995, aunque su fundación se remonta a 1987 cuando miembros representantes de la sociedad civil catalana y empresas privadas crean Fundación MACBA, una de las cuatro entidades que integran el Consorcio junto con la Generalitat de Catalunya, el Ayuntamiento de Barcelona y el Ministerio de Cultura. La nueva página web del museo (macba.cat), se lanzó a principios del 2012 tras un periodo de rediseño y reconceptualización, e incluye novedades como los Recorridos (permite al visitante crear itinerarios transversales seleccionando entre las cinco mil obras que componen la Colección MACBA, además de vídeos, fichas de artista, podcasts, publicaciones, etc.) y la unificación de bases de datos de la colección y el Archivo del Centro de Estudios y Documentación, entre otras muchas. Ràdio Web MACBA, el proyecto radiofónico del museo iniciado en el 2006, cuenta con su propia web rwm.macba.cat e incluye una selección de más de 250 podcasts sobre arte, filosofía, música experimental y material documental con la voluntad de fomentar una aproximación crítica a la producción sonora y el pensamiento contemporáneo. 

Sònia López es la responsable de la web y las publicaciones digitales del MACBA desde el 2001. Ha participado en diversos proyectos artísticos y pedagógicos en el MACBA y otras instituciones culturales de Barcelona. Activista crafter a tiempo parcial.

Anna Ramos es la coordinadora del proyecto radiofónico online Ràdio Web MACBA, y co-responsable del sello ALKU, plataforma pluridisciplinar que opera desde 1997. Bajo ambos paraguas desarrolla publicaciones, proyectos, instalaciones y ciclos en torno a la música por ordenador, el audio generativo, la síntesis, el pensamiento contemporáneo y otras áreas relacionadas. Asimismo, acaba de co-editar el libro del artista danés Goodiepal, El camino del hardcore (ALKU, 2012).

El documento se puede visualizar en ISSUU, y también se puede descargar como pdf desde la web del proyecto y por de ahí leerlo en vuestro iPad (visualización optimizada para la pantalla Retina).


 Foto: Latitudes.
 –

ACERCA DE #OPENCURATING


Partiendo de las preocupaciones exploradas por Latitudes durante el proyecto editorial realizado durante 'The Last Newspaper' (New Museum, Nueva York, 2010), y basándose en las prácticas del denominado 'periodismo abierto' (Open Journalism) – que trata de mejorar la colaboración y utilizar la habilidad de cualquier persona para publicar y compartir – #OpenCurating es un proyecto de investigación que indaga en las nuevas formas de interacción entre los públicos – sean seguidores en red o visitantes físicos – con obras de arte, su producción, exhibición y su contexto discursivo.

El proyecto se estructura a partir de tres elementos: una serie de diez entrevistas a comisarios, artistas, escritores y expertos web publicada en una edición digital gratuita (véase aquí), una discusión en Twitter moderada por el hashtag #OpenCurating y por último, un evento que tendrá lugar en Barcelona (fecha por determinar).
  
#OpenCurating es el proyecto ganador de la primera convocatoria BCN Producció 2012 en la categoría de investigación, otorgada por el Institut de Cultura de Barcelona.

Síguenos en Twitter: #OpenCurating
 






 

   
Content partners : Walker Art Center






Creative Commons Licence
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Stacks Image 39



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