Sedition Recommends: Art Basel Hong Kong

Twenty-five Minutes Older by Kingsley Ng. Image via Media Arts HK


The 2017 Art Basel Hong Kong is arranged into several sectors – Galleries, Encounters, Insights, Film and Discoveries – each of which offer a different perspective on the influences, directions and topics currently active in the contemporary art industry. Followers of Wang Qingsong can see his work represented by Blindspot Gallery as part of Kabinett.

The Sedition Blog has covered numerous art fairs internationally over the past few years and a repeat recommendation we make is that those interested in digital art should seek out the talks programme. Digital technologies inform infrastructure as well as artworks, and the talks programme is a great way to find out about both. On Friday, March 24, artists Michael Craig-Martin, Su Mei-Tse and Abigail Reynolds discuss art practice as a gateway to infrastructure in ‘The Language(s) We Speak: Art as Communication’. The conversation is moderated by Alan Lau, Co-chair of Tate’s Asia Pacific Acquisition Committee and Para Site.

On 22 March at midday artist Kingsley Ng discusses his practice, light and the built environment with writer and curator Valerie C. Doran. The talk accompanies the presentation of Ng’s multimedia work Twenty-Five Minutes Older, in which Hong Kong trams become moving camera obscuras.  Watch a video interview with Ng here. At 3:30pm on the same day artists Cao Fei and Yang Yongliang will speak to Freya Murray, Program Manager of Google Arts & Culture, London about the future of art in Virtual Reality. The talk, titled Virtual Frontiers | Artists Experimenting with Tilt Brush, considers the role of virtual tools such as Google Tilt Brush in shaping this future.

On 25 March the fair hosts two talks which engage with the influence of digital technologies. At 1pm a discussion on Technologies of the Present | New Media at Work is presented by artists Kyung Hwa Lee, Lin Ke and Masaki Fujihata. This conversation is followed by a discussion on New Criticism | Digital Media and Cultural Journalism with BBC Culture editor Matthew Anderson; George Chen, Head of Public Policy for Hong Kong and Taiwan, Facebook, Hong Kong and Nonny de la Peña, Founder, Emblematic Group, Santa Monica. The talk is moderated by Vivienne Chow, Founding Director, Cultural Journalism Campus and Honorary Lecturer, Journalism and Media Studies Centre (JMSC), The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong.


Satellite Events

Theaster Gates Presents Tarry Skies and Psalms for Now At White Cube


Alongside Art Basel HK visitors to Hong Kong can explore a lively city of art as galleries and institutes are transformed by new artworks. JOYCE’s Central store is visited by the work of Philip and Charlotte Colbert among others as Gazelli Art House takes over the iconic fashion venue. From 20 – 25 March Art Central Art Fair brings 100 contemporary galleries together at the Central Harbourfront, a ten minute walk from Art Basel.


Still image of DEEP WATER by Zheng Mahler

On Monday 20th of March from 5:00-9:00pm, Zheng Mahler’s work DEEP WATER will be translated from a single-channel video into an immersive VR experience alongside a series of 3D anaglyphic still prints from the video in Art Central Art Fair’s Booth D1. Through DEEP WATER, Zheng Maler will take the audience into an immersive time-machine that will allow them to experience various versions of the natural and political history of Sham Shui Po district of Kowloon.


The Tiger Returns To The Mountain computer rendering by Adrian Wong

On 19 March, see Adrian Wong introduce his new solo exhibition The Tiger Returns To The Mountain at K11 in an artist talk from 4-6pm. The exhibition, which runs from 20 March to 19 April, critically examines the evolution of Hong Kong’s political positioning by deconstructing the symbol of the tiger in a multi-layered installation. At the White Cube, Theaster Gates’ solo exhibition Tarry Skies and Psalms for Now seeks to facilitate change through an examination of the visual, social and spatial practices of roofing. The exhibition opens on the evening of 20 May.

The K11 Art Foundation (KAF) and MoMA PS1 have come together to present the exhibition .com/ .cn as part of their ongoing research partnership, which is co-curated by Klaus Biesenbach and Peter Eleey of MoMA PS1. The exhibition will open on the 20th of March with an artist talk and includes artworks by Darren Bader, Cao Fei, DIS, Aleksandra Domanovic, Gregory Edwards, Li Ming, Liang Wei, Lin Ke, Liu Shiyuan, Miao Ying, Oliver Payne, Sondra Perry, Wang Xin, and Anicka Yi. 

The show brings to the fore Chinese and Western practices informed and inspired by different region-based digital ecosystem. Each distinct regional internets have developed under varying forms of state control, each conditioning different social behaviours, economies, and modes of thought. These variations are particularly evident in comparing artistic responses to the available internets of China and the West, and their respective political and economic systems.

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