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Touch Grass
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Solo Exhibition by Kingson Kin-sing Chan

How can we, living in a highly urbanized environment, understand the memory of rural landscapes? In recent years, the popular internet meme "touch grass" has emerged, which suggests that when someone has spent too much time online, they need to go outside and "touch some grass" to reconnect with the real world. 

 

In the summer of 2022, during the later stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, the artist was fully sponsored by the Hong Kong Arts Development Council's cultural exchange program to participate in a three-month artist-in-residence program in Blanca, Spain. This small town, with a population of 6,000 to 6,500 people, has its own unique charm. As social ecology professor Marchar, I. (2014) stressed that the local place names served as an important part of landscape memory and also form an essential part of the intangible traditional folk culture on the local scale. The Blanca Castle and the nearby mountains are so significant that the town's name was derived from its color in the 13th century, initially named Negra (Black), and then interestingly renamed Blanca (White) in 1383. 

 

The name originates from the extraordinary scenery; and during the artist's residency, the artist created a series of works themed around the local landscape. The works reflect the artist's physical presence in Blanca, exploring the relationship with the experience of virtual artistic creation/presentation that had become common in the post-COVID era. The works also align with the residency program's themes of Body, Spatiality, and Territory, as set by the local art residency organization Aktuelle Architektur Der Kultur (AADK). The exhibited works cover three aspects: the artist's relationship with the landscape/nature, the artist's engagement with the community/culture/people, and the artist's self-discovery/reflection. 

 

As a traditional Spanish small town, the local residents' lifestyle is relatively simple: there are no chain stores, shopping malls, or cinemas, and the traditional Encierros de Blanca (running of the bulls festival) is still held every August. These artworks themed on Blanca open up an interesting exploration for our current environment: through comparison, observation, and exchange, how can Hong Kong audiences find their own positioning when discussing the concept of landscape memory? What is our understanding of "body, space, and territory" in our society and culture? After three years of the COVID era, how do we reconstruct the meaning of "reconnecting with the real world," and what is the "real world" that we truly care about? 

 

"Touch Grass" is an alternative "travel book" that aims to inspire the audience to think, imagine, feel, and be concerned about the society we live in (and hope for), and to explore related ideas. 

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Exhibition Period|25 July – 24 August 2024
Time|Tuesday to Sunday 11:00 – 19:00

Venue|1a space, Unit 14, Cattle Depot Artist Village
Opening Reception|27 July 2024 (Sat) 15:00 – 19:00
Casual Artist Meeting / Guided Tour / Chat with Artist|3, 10, 17 (Sat) August 2024, 15:00– 18:00
 

Artist Bio - Kingson Kin-sing Chan

Lives and works in Hong Kong. Kingson Chan uses a number of approaches and uses a wide range of different media such as drawing, photography, video installation, performance, objects, also initiating projects that involve the public. His work is very idiosyncratic and is involved with a mixture of autobiography, documentary and anthropology; he addresses relationships between cultural significances, differences, and belief systems. Awarded British Council 60th Anniversary scholarship to pursue study Master of Art, Fine Art, in Central Saint Martins College of Art & Design, University of the Arts London, United Kingdom. Chinese University of Hong Kong BA-Fine Arts (Hons) and Hong Kong Baptist University BBA-Marketing (Hons).  


Worked as a member of the production team for a cultural event "Detour" and in Ai Weiwei studio for art project management. Chan has awarded “Honorary Mention” for Social Art Award, the Institute for Art and Innovation, Germany in 2019; “Excellence Award” for <Joy of Art: Irene Chou Response Show>, Asia Society Hong Kong Centre in 2020; and as a finalist for the Hong Kong Human Rights Arts Prize organized by the Justice Centre Hong Kong in 2020.  


Chan received a full grant from the Hong Kong Art Development Council Cultural Exchange programme and attended an Artist-in-Residency in Spain in 2022.   


He has exhibited in Hong Kong, United Kingdom, Australia, Greece, Spain and Romania and his works are collected by private collectors. He set up his own studio for art creations in 2017 and was a part time art instructor at CUSUS the Chinese University of Hong Kong.  

Message from the Artist

I sincerely invite you to visit my first solo art exhibition, "Touch Grass", which opens on 25 July, 2024 (Thursday) and runs through 24 August, 2024 (Saturday) at 1A Space, Unit 14, Cattle Depot Artist Village. An opening reception will be held on 27 July 2024 (Saturday) from 3pm to 7pm. 

 

The exhibition showcases around 12 pieces of mixed media works, installations, video documentaries as well as photographic works. 

 

I look forward to seeing you soon! 

 

Best regards, 

Kingson CHAN 

 

For inquiries, please email touchgrass2024@gmail.com or call +852 60874470 Ms Kwan 

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