HONG KONG PHOTOGRAPHY IN UK
The first solo photography exhibition in the UK by the Hong Kong artist ‘anothermountainman‘, (also known as Stanley Wong) is being presented by the Chinese Arts Centre in Manchester from April 16-June 12, 2010 .
The exhibition, titled Lan Wei, (or ‘Decaying End’) depicts haunting photographic imagery of the abandoned and incomplete housing construction projects in Asia that resulted from the collapse of the property market in the late 1990’s.
The photographs in the exhibition were taken in China, Thailand, Cambodia, Turkey and Singapore.
Meaning of ‘Lan Wei’
The term ‘lan wei’ was coined in reference to these aborted building projects, ‘lan’ meaning ‘decaying’ and ‘wei’ as ‘the ending’. ‘Lan wei’ indicates something is unfinished, and also implies this process is long, drawn out, and suspended between completion and destruction.
Anothermountainman’s images attempt to capture the relics of this mad ‘gold rush’ and, at the same time, reflect how, throughout the years, ‘lan wei’ has manifested not only in building projects but also in all aspects of life.
Incomplete building projects are the ‘fruits’ of two to three decades of futile chasing after opportunities, desires, and dreams in a liberated society, at a time of seemingly limitless economic expansion. Just as buildings can be aborted, so can plans and hopes.
In anothermountainman’s images, buildings loom empty and abandoned. However, far from being literal documentary images they are also sites where captivating and mysterious scenes are staged. The scenes of figures positioned amidst a few of their possessions evoke narratives of dreams and aspirations which also have been abandoned.
Stanley Wong, ‘anothermountainman’ Credits
Born in Hong Kong and best known for his red-white-blue works, anothermountainman has exhibited internationally and represented Hong Kong in the 51st Venice Biennale (2005). His other selected exhibitions include the 1st Shenzhen Biennale of Urbanism/ Architecture (OCAT, 2005), the Hong Kong Art Biennale (2003/1999) and Shanghai International Poster Exhibition (Shanghai Art Museum, 1999).
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