Ritual of Synthesis 《光承轉合》
LI Hiu Wa
SIU Wai Hang
Date: 3 - 31 August 2019
Gallery EXIT is pleased to announce “Ritual of Synthesis”, a group exhibition by LI Hiu Wa, Urich LAU and SIU Wai Hang. The exhibition will open on 3 August 2019 and remain on view through 31 August 2019. An opening reception will be held on Saturday, 3 August from 4pm to 7pm.
The exhibition showcases works by three artists who explore alternative photography and image-making methods in their practices. The artists have developed their own unique processes and visual languages that allow them to reflect on photography as a medium in contemporary art.
SIU Wai Hang employs an analogue approach to photography and explores its materiality in his series. “Strokes of Light” focuses on light as a medium, which is fundamental to photography and essential for visual perception. SIU developed a series of prints using the leading end of photographic roll film that is exposed to light before being loaded into the camera. The array of colours captured is literally a transformation of intangible light into physical form. In “Faces of People”, SIU discovers photography in an alternative way with obsolete technology.[WHS1] By taking individual still images with a super 8 film camera, a device made for capturing moving images, he explores the nature of photography through the context of moving images.
LI Hiu Wa is fascinated by the landscape and still life objects of the every day. His works explore the passing of time and its effect on the imagery and materiality of still life photography. LI observes in “Tree and Watermark” the subtle changes of a plant and a puddle of water beside it for a duration of around one year through a series of three digital prints. He also experiments with alternative photographic printing in “Fading Harbour”, for which the image is developed using flame tree flower extract – an anthotype technique that makes use of plant pigment as a photosensitive material. Because of the absence of the fixation process to prevent further exposure, the image will eventually disappear due to over-exposure. The work reminds us of the inability of photography to preserve a captured moment forever.
Urich LAU explores the effect of modern technology on our daily life and the way it affects our perception of reality. In “Code File: Three Domes”, images of domes are intervened by glitches created by disrupting the lines of codes within the image files, through inserting the mission statement of Singapore’s National Arts Council. The work remarks on cultural hegemony in the region. The revealed codes also bring to light the image alteration process that often exists behind the scene in the digital era. “Spy Ball” captures and tracks the movements of gallery visitors with with an assemblage of a sepak takraw ball (from the traditional Southeast Asian game) with 11 spy cameras. The live-feed footages are glitched by cross-feeding of signals, as well as streamed through a multi-channel surveillance digital video recorder. The work reflects on the accessibility of technology in modern times and our increasingly active role in creating images of our surroundings. Yet our freedom of movement and privacy are restricted by the video capturing devices.