Hong Kong cultural scene is not short of women artists, whether they are actress, singer, designer, painter, sculptor, multimedia artist, etc. And this is fortunately in constant evolution.
On the occasion of the International Women’s Day, we’d like to shed a particular light on five Hong Kong inspiring women artists from different generations, background and medium of expression.
ROSANNA LI WEI-HAN
Rosanna Li Wei-han
Rosanna Li Wei-han (born in the 1960s) is a Hong Kong ceramicist, design educator and avid collector of paper offering shoes, well known for her “signature ceramic fat ladies” sculptures, which can be found in many public spaces in Hong Kong. Her chubby figures are versatile caricatures, portraying the diverse and vibrant facets of Hong Kong popular culture, like her Mahjong or yoga sculptures.
She has held many solo exhibitions and participated in more than 170 group exhibitions in Hong Kong, Macau, and Mainland China, as well as overseas (Taiwan, Japan, Korea, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Mongolia, Australia, Canada, USA, France, and UK).
Displayed in public spaces, her artworks are also part of the collections of major museums in Hong Kong, Mainland China and Taiwan. Not only does she reflect on Hong Kong culture but she is also part of Hong Kong people daily life.
People passing by, people lazing, Rosanna Wei Han Li, Yau Tong MTR Station, Hong Kong
Dubbed Hong Kong’s “Queen of Singer-Songwriters” after winning the Commercial Radio Singer-Songwriter Awards for seven consecutive years, Ivana Wong (born in 1979) has been mastering the fields of music, performing arts and film since she emerged in 2005.
She wrote her own music as well as movie theme songs for which she received multiple nominations and awards (Missed Address for the movie A Beautiful Life, 2011; The Songbird Anthology, 2011; Stay White, 2012, etc.), she performed her own music in concerts and festivals in Hong Kong, Mainland China and abroad, collaborated with fellow Canto-pop artists like Hins Cheung.
She also appeared in musical theatre (I Love You Because, 2011) and played in several movies (including Octave, 2010; Golden Chickensss, 2014).
A versatile artist, Ivana turned her creativity to the visual arts in 2021, culminating in her debut exhibition, The Missing Something—The Singing Canvases, at ArtisTree, in which she explored the idea of sharing, kindness and gratitude.
Ivana Wong, The Singing Canvases, 2021
Angela Su (born in 1970s) received a degree in biochemistry in Canada before pursuing visual arts. Her works investigate the perception and imagery of the body, through metamorphosis, hybridity and transformation.
Her biological drawings are as precise as scientific sketches, with also a mythical sense of aesthetic, to challenge the audience’s visual sensory.
Angela has participated in exhibitions in museums and institutions internationally (including Beijing, Helsinki, Mexico, New York, Beijing, London, Vienna, Sydney).
In 2022, Angela Su will be the first woman artist to represent Hong Kong at the 59th Venice Biennale. Her solo exhibition will be curated by Freya Chou, an independent curator based in Hong Kong. Both Su and Chou were selected by the M+ Museum and the Hong Kong Arts Development Council (HKADC).
Angela Su, Art Basel, 2017
Socially engaged, sculptor Jaffa Lam (born in 1973) is specialised in large-scale, site-specific and mixed-media installations. She mainly uses recycled materials, like crate wood, old furniture, recycled fabric, abandoned metal and umbrella fabric.
More attached to the process of creation than to the final artworks, she has been representing ordinary people through her installations. Her works often explore issues relating to local culture, history, society and current affairs, and she’s been an advocate for art in public, craftsmanship and the regeneration of art making cycle.
In 2009, she started a community project Micro Economy in collaboration with the Hong Kong Women Workers’ Association, which has been showcased in many countries and shows, such as Setouchi Triennale, Japan, 2013, Hong Kong Week, Taiwan, 2015, China 8, Germany, 2015, Utopias/Heterotopia Wuzhen International Contemporary Art Exhibition, 2016, and Lumières, Lyon, France, 2018.
She is currently Academic Head of Hong Kong Art School and Chairperson of Hong Kong Sculpture Association.
Her latest work Landscape Behind the Door will be part of The 31 Women Exhibition in May at 10 Chancery Lane Gallery.
Jaffa Lam, Equal = Unequal, 2020
Phoebe Hui is an interdisciplinary multimedia artist primarily working in the relationship between language, sound and technology. She explores the interdependence between human beings and machines, inviting the audience to rethink their perception and relationships with everyday devices.
Phoebe graduated from UCLA, Los Angeles, Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, London, and the City University of Hong Kong and received numerous grants and awards in Hong Kong and abroad.
In 2021, she has been the first solo female artist to present The Audemars Piguet Art Commission in Asia with her installation The Moon Is Leaving Us, comprising of two major bodies of work: Selena, a custom-built drawbot that produces intricate Moon drawings; and Selenite, a kinetic robot consisting of 48 mechanical arms arranged in a parabolic shape projecting varying Moon imagery on to 48 unique screens.
With this installation, Phoebe questioned the different manners in which we represent the Moon and blurs the boundaries between science and poetry to shine a new light on the cultural ties we share.