Hong Kong Eye in Action News’ Eyes

Hit rate is recently linked to the measure of success and performance bonus at Apple Daily Action News. This chart ranks the video news by popularity which hints the taste of general readers. Aha, it isn’t too surprising that most viewed videos are pathetic and tragic, entertaining as well as about money and sex.

If and only if that chart is the true reflection of Hong Kong people’s appetite, how would our contemporary art define and be defined?

Hong Kong Eye at ArtisTree “seeks to recast and illuminate significant narratives in Hong Kong contemporary art” as stated in the press release. After the spotlights in London, the home-coming exhibition may shed some lights on contemporary art in the context of “local taste”. If I were a metric-driven news editor, here would be my faves.

1. Wong Chung-yu’s Sodom is inevitably the winner. This real-time programme depicts a close-looped ecology of man and woman, money and love. It’s a zero-sum game that both currencies – money and love – which flow among men and women, are kept at constant. Identities are eliminated so the storyline is more straight-forward and fascinating than TV drama. I stood there long enough to crack the logic of cash and love flow.


Sodom by Wong Chung-yu (details)

In Sodom, Woman owns money and hollow heart > Woman meets Man > Man takes money > Both have solid hearts > Man meets skeleton > Woman loses solid heart > Man has sex with skeleton > Skeleton takes money > Man groans and loses solid heart > Skeleton becomes Woman, with money and hollow heart > Woman meets Man … it loops simultaneously in every character.

With a piece of beautiful music and periodical groaning, the work becomes so dramatic and sarcastic. Readers love it without knowing the biblical background of Sodom nor realising the stereotypes and sexism. For sure it will top the chart.

Pathetic/ Tragic Φ Φ Φ Φ Φ   |   Money & Sex  Φ Φ Φ Φ Φ   |   Entertaining Φ Φ Φ Φ

(full score: 5 Φ )


In Search of Primordial Idiolect IV by Adrian Wong

2. First runner-up would be Adrian Wong’s In Search of Primordial Idiolect IV, or the furry thing lying in the middle of the hall near the entrance. This thingy utters helplessly and shakes stupidly from time to time. Not 100% adorable nor audible, it does make you curious: Is it a sausage with limbs? Is it the organ? Is it an old mate from Sesame Street? Sometimes we just want to be kids again to play with ducky toys.

If you like this route, there is a sequel in the next hall. Furry threesome have evolved from vocal utterance to conversation. If touching is allowed, I’m sure kids would love to punch them.

Pathetic/ Tragic Φ    |   Money & Sex  Φ    |   Entertaining Φ Φ Φ Φ Φ

There are two finalists:

3. In Please Pretend We’ve Been to a Lot of Places and Love Hotel series, Ho Sin-tung brings the world in front of us. Part of the visual elements are business cards and receipts of love hotels which named after a country or a city. Hong Kong people travel a lot. We possess freedom to travel, so does the freedom to stay in “hotels” named Kyoto, Venice and San Diego. The notion of “one world” is closer than we think.

Pathetic/ Tragic Φ   |   Money & Sex  Φ Φ Φ Φ    |   Entertaining Φ Φ Φ


Please Pretend We’ve Been to a Lot of Places by Ho Sin-tung (partial)

4. Wilson Shieh’s illustration of Five Tallest Buildings in Hong Kong is a vivid example of beauty pageant. Gossip and paparazzi are perfect seasonings to the recipe yet their see-through evening gowns are awful enough to spice up the heat.

Pathetic/ Tragic ?   |   Money & Sex  ???    |   Entertaining Φ Φ Φ Φ Φ


Five Tallest Buildings in Hong Kong by Wilson Shieh (from Hong Kong Eye website)

This listing acts as a response to the video news preference yet I do wish the contemporary art scene remains its diversity and vitality. Please, please don’t skew to only entertaining, pathetic, tragic, money and sex in both journalistic and aesthetic worlds.

By the way, let me clarify that “hit rate” (or 點擊率) referred by Apple Daily should be total views (瀏覽量), which is an absolute figure rather than a rate/ ratio/ percentage.

Hong Kong Eye

Visited on May 2, 3 and 8 at ArtisTree, Hong Kong

The article was also posted at The House News.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s