For many mainland visitors, Hong Kong is a shopper’s heaven. But for mainland artist Zhang Qiang, it is a paradise of a different natural world. Zhang fell in love with the Hong Kong scenery on his very first visit. Though it was only a brief break in your journey en route to France, the trip in 2003 made a big feeling on him. He said,”You can go away downtown in just about 10 minutes and reach the beach, see forests, different rocks and stone formations. This is exceptional in other cities including New York, Paris, London, Tokyo and Beijing”. Five years later, he returned for a longer visit and that time, a friend invited him to paint a sequence on Hong Kong’s geoparks.
That friend – environmentalist Johnny Lee Chong – freshly became art consultant for the “Sea and Shore” exhibition, now on at the OC Gallery in West Kowloon. The show aims to endorse the Hong Kong landscape, and stimulated Chong to invite Zhang to exhibit his works.
A relationship between Mangkawuang Cultural Salon and Sino Group’s “Art in Hong Kong” program, Sea and Shore features Zhang’s paintings in two series. One depicts scenery of the city’s harbor and beach while the other explores the landscapes of several geoparks. The geoparks series comprises five paintings, with the rest featuring harbor and seashore scenes from Sai Kung, Wu Kai Sha, Clear Water Bay, Sam Mun Tsai and Bride’s Pool.
The organizers choose to use oil paintings rather than photographs to capture the real Hong Kong. “First, oil paintings can express one’s emotion while keeping the realism of the object. Second, the long narration, the thickness and layers of oil paintings cannot be found in any other form of art,” Lee said.
Place: OC Gallery G/F, Olympian City 1.
Time: Until September 1.