PARADE 遊行 2004-2015

My work, PARADE series, was inspired by the parades initiated in Hong Kong over the past few decades.

It is a continuous project that I started in 2004, after I returned to Hong Kong from my artist-in-residency in the Akademie Schloss Solitude, Stuggart in Germany.

Since 1997, the handover of Hong Kong to mainland China from the British Government, Hong Kong has generated annual protests for the pursue of various social values.  Most of the parades involved thousands of marchers; the 2004 parade brought more than 530,000 people onto the street.  Prior to this, the pro-democracy protest in 1989 drew more participants, with 1.5 million marchers.

Amazingly, all of them acted in extremely peaceful ways. Marchers are encouraged to go to the street wearing similarly-colored clothings.

I attempt a conceptual approach to explore the meaning of existence of human beings in their cities through their interactions with the perverted environment and situation.

I have been working on this project for more than 10 years, but the productivity is comparatively low. From the selection of locations to the precise retouched details, on average, each piece of the work take me at least two months to accomplish.

In this prolonged period of creation, I have never stopped rethinking our current circumstances. I reflected the crisis of disorder of our society structure and values with deliberately ordered heights. Is our mode of collective behavior a self-demand or a consequence of the social consciousness? What is our genuine pursuit?

I carefully considered and chose the places to take the photos in this series, such as the old Star Ferry Pier in Central (Parade 5), where Hong Kong people protested against its demolition and struggled to preserve it; Wenweipo head office (Parade 1), the office building of Hong Kong Monetary Authority (Parade 4), Wanchai Ferry Pier (Parade 3) where dozens of Korean farmers jumped into the sea in 2005 when the WTO meetings were taking place; Bird’s Nest and Water Cube (Parade 7 & 8) which were the landmark architecture in Beijing 2008 Olympic Games; and Central Police Station (Parade 11) which was also a landmark building of the colonial architecture in Hong Kong.

All these choices reflected certain types of social signals. I photographed the buildings and model on site first and duplicated the model with photo retouching. The repeated subjects shared the same gesture, the same clothing and the same poker face. People have become faceless with no personal opinion. They look at the same direction and they go towards the same direction. Combining these people with the background, the intended orderliness and apathy are my arranged abnormal unease reflecting the nihility of our existence in the world. It seems to be the prelude of the tempest of disorder.

多年來我的作品都是探討社會生態及存在價值的問題。

香港的遊行啟發了我創作「遊行」系列;我把個人的重覆代表整體社會的價值取向。所有「一樣的人」 都戴著墨鏡向著同一方向行進或站立遙望…… 「他們」的身分及拍攝所選擇的地點也提供了另一重意義。

當全球進入一體化的同時,人類的思維相對地單向化。我們開始失去了個性,失去了對周邊所發生的事件的個人想法,隨波遂流、人云亦云。對生活的價值觀漸變模糊….. 

我創作的遊行系列受香港的遊行所啟發,香港的遊行是世界級的,人所共知。基於以上的想法,我們最後全變成了同一個人,在城市裡無意識地向同一方向遊盪或站立,表現出我們在世上存在的虛無。

作品裡所選擇的拍攝地點是經過細心考慮而決定的,如中環的舊天星碼頭(遊行5),當年香港人為了保留它曾在那裡抗爭;大公報總部(遊行1)、香港金融管理局辦公大樓(遊行4)、灣仔碼頭(遊行3),2005年世貿會議其間,韓國農民曾在那裡跳海示威、鳥巢及水立方(遊行78),2008年北京奧運體育場館地標性建築物、中央警署(遊行11),香港的代表性殖民地建築等曾在社會上產生過議題的地方或建築,再配上人物的衣著造型與拍攝地點產生關聯。

2004年我完成了在德國斯圖加特Solitude藝術家留駐回港後便開始「遊行」系列的創作。我嘗試以觀念性的角度探討人類在城市生存的空間或意義。這系列我花了十年以上的時間去創作,每張作品由拍攝到完成最少需時2個月,制作時間很長所以產量很少,平均每年只生產一張作品。

我藉著此系列作品對觀眾提出問題,希望他們反思當下的生活狀態。