Press Releases

June 11, 2007
STAR FAIRY in Venice

The Hong Kong Arts Development Council (ADC) proudly presents the works of local artists Amy Cheung, Map Office (Laurent Gutierrez + Valérie Portefaix) and Hiram To at the world renowned visual arts exhibition – the 52nd. International Art Exhibition La Biennale di Venezia. This is the fourth time for Hong Kong visual artists to exhibit their works in this international event under the banner of "Hong Kong, China".

This year's exhibition "STAR FAIRY" is a playful, critical and engaging project initiated by Mr Norman Ford. Itsets out to ask questions on how Hong Kong "represents" itself to the world. Amy Cheung's project "Devil's Advocate" consists of an elegant ferris wheel like structure with frozen figures. Map Office presents "Concrete Jungle / Parrot's Tale", an oyster shells built island with talking parrots peppering visitors with humorous, critical questions. Lastly, Hiram To's elaborate installation "I Love You More Than My Own Death" plays with a multi-layered references to present Hong Kong's fascinating relationship with fame.

To mark this momentous occasion, Dr Patrick Ho, Secretary for Home Affairs of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government and Mr Ma Fung-kwok, Chairman of the Hong Kong Arts Development Council officiated at the opening ceremony last Friday.

Speaking at the occasion, Mr Ma Fung-kwok asserted that it is the aspiration of the ADC to showcase the best of Hong Kong artists in the international arts arena. He said, "Our participation in the Venice Biennale is an important part of the exchange and communication between Hong Kong and the international arts community and to prepare the groundwork for our representatives to forge ties with their overseas counterparts."

Mr Ma also extended his heartfelt thanks to Dr Patrick Ho for his presence and support to the Hong Kong arts community.

Presiding at the ceremony, Dr Patrick Ho praised the international composition of the exhibition. Curator Norman Ford is an American residing in Hong Kong for years, Amy Cheung and Hiram To are two Hong Kong-born Chinese while Map Office is constituted by two French architects based in Hong Kong. The exhibition reflects the diversity of cultural identity and heritage of Hong Kong as an international city. Artists of different background found their space of expression in Hong Kong in a liberal environment.

Following the opening ceremony, a guided tour was hosted by the curator and artists. From Map Office's mist-filled oyster shell covered island to Amy Cheung's giant freezer and Hiram To's installation, audiences were able to experience an unique artistic journey and to see Hong Kong from a new perspective.

Also joining the ceremony were Mr Zhang Jian-da, Cultural Attache of the People's Republic of China in Italy; Mr Duncan Pescod, Special Representative for Hong Kong, Economic and Trade Affairs to the European Communities; Mr Kwok Kian-chow, Director of Singapore Art Museum; Mr Edmund Cheng, Chairman of National Arts Council and its CEO, Mr Lee Suan-hiang; Mr Ung Vai-meng, Director of the Macao Museum of Art; Mr Ng Fong Chao and Mr James Chu of Macao Museum of Art; Mr Lui Chak-keong, artist of Macao Pavilion; Mr Louis Yu, Chief Executive of the ADC's Administrative Office and friends of the Hong Kong arts community, just to name a few, Mr Leung Chi-wo, Ms Sara Wong, Mr Tobias Berger and Ms Catherine Lau.

To facilitate cultural exchange and communication with counterparts from the Mainland China, Taiwan, Macau, Singapore and other countries, the ADC also hosted a gala dinner tonight.

The ADC has been taken part in the Biennale in the name of Hong Kong, China since 2001. The total number of visitors of the past three exhibitions amounts to 100,000.

This year, the exhibition is situated at a prime location adjacent to the main exhibition area --- Arsenale, Campo della Tana, Castello 2126 - 30122 Venezia. It opens daily from 10:00 to 18:00 (except Tuesdays), 10 June – 21 November.

The International Art Exhibition La Biennale di Venezia was first held in 1895. This year, the exhibition attracts participants from 76 cities and countries including the Mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Macau.

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Hong Kong Arts Development Council
STAR FAIRY by the Curator