ART HK 12 kicks off this Thursday, 17 May 2012, and will run through Sunday. Art Radar has rounded up some of the best concurrent art events happening around the city, so get your smartphone out, open up your calendar and start filling in those free hours.

Martin Wong, 'FDNY', 1998, acrylic on canvas. Image courtesy Galerie Buchholtz.

Para/Site | “太平天國/Taiping Tianguo, A History of Possible Encounters” | Ongoing until 12 August 2012

This exhibition compares four ethnically Chinese artists, Ai Weiwei, Frog King Kwok, Tehching Hsieh, and Martin Wong, who have been influenced by four vastly different locations, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and San Francisco, respectively. The artists all lived in New York City during the 1980s, and the show aims to probe the “tenuous or even possibly non-existing connections” between them, an exploration of a culturally dynamic city and era that shaped all four artists’ future styles.

Opera Gallery | “Infinity in the Universe of Yayoi Kusama” | 15 May to 1 June 2012

Superstar Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama will have two major shows running alongside ART HK 12. This exhibition, opening first, brings together thirty works from 1978 up until 2011, including paintings, sculptures and limited edition silkscreen prints.

2P Contemporary Art | “Yuk King Tan + Chow Chun Fai: The Limit of Visibility | 15 May to 29 July, 2012, opening reception 17 May 2012, 4:30 to 8:30 pm

2P Contemporary Art gallery presents the first duo exhibition of works by Chinese-New Zealand artist Yuk King Tan and Hong Kong artist Chow Chun Fai. The show will include drawing, sculpture, photography, video and installation that creates a dialogue between the two artists’ practices.

Hanart TZ Gallery | “Yang Jiechang: King of Canton” | 15 May to 18 June 2012

Hanart TZ Gallery will host this solo show from Canton-born artist Yang Jiechang. Yang’s work is inspired by the rich historical legacy of the Pearl River Delta, from its ancient kings to its modern day economic flourishing.

Mobile M+ | “Mobile M+: Yau Ma Tei” | 15 May to 10 June, 2012

Though the building is not scheduled to open until late 2017, the M+ Museum of Visual Culture is organising a series of “nomadic” exhibitions in the run-up to inauguration. For “Yau Ma Tei”, the museum has invited seven Hong Kong-based artists to create pop-up installations around the Yau Ma Tei district, reflecting on and reinterpreting the city’s history through narrative and visual storytelling. Participating artist Yu Lik-wai will give a talk in Cantonese on 15 May 2012 at the Broadway Cinematheque, and there will be guided tours through the installation sites each weekend.

Jiang Zhi, 'Slight Smile, Shortcut Code', 2012, oil on canvas, part of the exhibition "Impure Light". Image courtesy Saamlung.

Saamlung Gallery | “Jiang Zhi: Impure Light” | Exhibition from 15 May to 16 June 2012, opening reception 16 May 2012, 2 to 5 pm

Saamlung Gallery is curating an exhibition of mid-career Chinese artist Jiang Zhi to run from 15 May to 16 June 2012. Jiang’s paintings explore the tension between naturalistic and technological perception in contemporary society. The exhibition at Saamlung will run in parallel with a solo show at the Times Museum in Guangzhou.

Asia Society Hong Kong | ‘The Future Will Be… China Edition’ book launch | 16 May 2012, 12 to 2 pm

Celebrated curator Hans Ulrich Obrist tries to answer the question, “What is the future of the art world?” Taking his own uncertainty as a starting point, Obrist will raise several possibilities in his new book series. For the inaugural edition, China, Obrist collected bilingual texts and contributions from over a hundred major figures in contemporary Chinese art. Obrist will be at the book’s opening at the Asia Society, which will also feature a discussion panel moderated by Asia Society Museum Director Melissa Chiu.

Peal Lam in front of Zhu Jinshi's work; Zhu Jinshi 朱金石 (b. 1954), '满江红 The River Full in Red', 2006, 布面油画 oil on canvas, 290 x 400 cm. Image courtesy Sutton PR Asia.

Pearl Lam Galleries | “Chinese Contemporary Abstract, 1980s until Present: MINDMAP” | 16 May to 20 July 2012

Making her return to the Hong Kong gallery scene, eminent collector Pearl Lam will open her new Pedder Building space with this inaugural exhibition on Wednesday 16 May 2012. The survey show, curated by notable academic Gao Minglu, brings together seven important contemporary Chinese artists.

Logo for Art East Island.

Art East Island 2012 | 17 to 20 May 2012

Art East Island is a group of galleries, artists and non-profits in Hong Kong’s Chai Wan art district that are hosting specially-curated exhibitions and artist studios during ART HK’s run. There will be shuttle buses between the convention centre and Art East Island every thirty minutes.

Lightbombs Contemporary | “Introducing: Lightbombs Contemporary” | 17 to 20 May 2012

Founded in 2011, art advisory Lightbombs Contemporary brings together a dozen contemporary artists from the Philippines, Australia, New York and Hong Kong for their popup showroom.

Royal Academy of Arts | Artist Talk with Mariko Mori | 17 May 2012,  12 to 1 pm

Japanese artist Mariko Mori will be in conversation with Charles Saumarez Smith, Secretary and Chief Executive of the Royal Academy of Arts, and Richard Chang, Collector and Trustee of the Royal Academy Trust. They will discuss her work since her 2000 collaboration with the Royal Academy of Arts in the context of Asian contemporary art as a whole.

Spoon Art Fair | 18 to 20 May 2012

With a focus on young and emerging artists, the Spoon Art Fair will run from 18 to 20 May 2012 at the Grand Hyatt Hong Kong. The fair distinguishes itself by using hotel rooms as exhibition spaces, with the aim to “create an innovative art scene in Hong Kong while making art a part of, not separate from, life”.

KWAN Sheung Chi, 'Hong Kong', 2012, offset print, installation view. Part of the exhibition "100 Things, a Little Retrospective". Image courtesy Gallery Exit.

Gallery Exit | “KWAN Sheung Chi: 100 things, a little retrospective” | 18 May to 22 June, 2012, opening reception 18 May 2012, 6 to 8 pm

This solo exhibition is the second “retrospective” from KWAN Sheung Chi and will feature some of the Hong Kong artist’s most recent works. His first retrospective, a wry commentary on the identity of the artist and his relationship to the contemporary art world, was held at Gallery Exit when the artist was only 22.

Intelligence Squared Asia will host the debate "Contemporary Art Excludes the 99%".

Intelligence Squared | Debate: “Contemporary Art Excludes the 99%” | 18 May 2012, 6:30 pm

IQ2 Asia will sponsor a live debate on 18 May entitled “Contemporary Art Excludes the 99%”. Four leading art world figures will explore questions about just who the contemporary art world and its institutions are benefiting. The debate will be moderated by The Art Newspaper Editor-at-Large Georgina Adam.

FEAST Projects | FIVE | 18 May 2012, 7:30 to 9:30 pm

Hong Kong gallery FEAST Projects will open a second space on 18 May 2012. For the opening, they have invited American artist Rashaad Newsome to reprise his performance piece FIVE. The multimedia work, which first debuted in 2009, draws on the hip hop and vogue dance culture of New York in the 1990s. For his Hong Kong performance, Newsome will incorporate ancient Chinese string and percussion instruments accompanied by opera singer Stefanos Koroneos and rapper SCANZ. Space is limited, so be sure to RSVP.

Yayoi Kusama, 'Tulip with All My Love', 2010, fiberglass reinforced plastic, urethane paint, metal. Image Courtesy Ota Fine Arts; copyright Yayoi Kusama.

Sotheby’s Hong Kong Gallery | “YAYOI KUSAMA – Hong Kong Blooms in My Mind | 19 to 31 May 2012

The second Yayoi Kusama exhibition of the week. For the opening of their new gallery space, Sotheby’s Hong Kong Gallery will host a selling exhibition of nearly forty works by blue-chip contemporary artist Yayoi Kusama, encompassing her work from the 1950s to today. The show will also feature the monumental piece Tulip with All My Love, seen above, from 17 to 20 May in the lobby of One Pacific Place, Sotheby’s new location.

Do you know of any other key events that will be happening around Hong Kong during ART HK 12? Leave a comment below with your event suggestions.


Click here to read our coverage of ART HK 12

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Related Topics: art in Hong Kong, art tourism, art fairs, gallery shows, lectures and talks

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By Brittney

Brittney is a writer, curator and contemporary art gallerist. Born in Singapore and based in New York City, Brittney maintains a deep interest in the contemporary art landscape of Southeast Asia. This is combined with an equally strong interest in contemporary art from the Asian diasporas, alongside the issues of identity, transmigration and global relations.

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