29 October - 12 December, 2020, at Gallery HZ

Gallery HZ presents "Stains of Time", a group exhibition by Hong Kong artists Night Fung, Sophie Cheung and Michell Lie. The exhibition opens on October 29, 2020 and runs through December 12, 2020.  


From abstraction to conceptual, their creative interpretation of ink as a medium is reflected in their distinctive styles. Through this common medium, the artists contemplate on concepts of time and temporality, creating a non-linear manner through which viewers measure time not by the passing hour, but by transient experience.

Night Fung approaches ink with an equal sense of intricacy and spontaneity—placing pigment ink and water on a large piece of plastic sheet, Fung adjusts the palette’s hue and texture by gently tilting the plastic sheet, creating a lagoon of dissolved ink before pressing a sheet of rice paper on it. Transferred on the paper are fantastical prints of colour clouds, each manifests in kaleidoscopic forms that bleed seamlessly with one another. By omitting the use of brush and pen, Fung’s works create an alternate dimension in which viewers are invited to an ephemeral experience that does not adhere to any linear progression of time. 

Sophie Cheung’s work falls in the vein of ink in a unique manner—composed entirely of erasers, her new series involve the laborious process of erasing printing ink from newspaper, the subject of which range from daily news, advertisements, or even prayers. Exhausted by a year of socio-political turmoil, Cheung was initially compelled to seek momentary relief from news overload by erasing printed newspaper. She soon discovered the duality of the act as both dissolution and formalisation of content — the eraser does not merely remove ink from a printed surface, but also transfers and retains ink in its body, transforming burdensome news into a collection of vibrant coloured mosaics. The physical transfer of ink serves as a reminder that time is never erased, but simply an extension and transfer of memory.

Michell Lie uses a combination of ink brush, water colour and 0.05 cm ink pen to create her body of abstract paintings. Lie’s work often begins with a focal brushstroke of black ink, anchoring the otherwise gestural composition while establishing a clear progression throughout the piece. As an artist who engages in polyamorous creation, Lie pursues multiple creative projects simultaneously, revisiting works through subtle augmentation on a weekly basis. The seemingly spontaneous additions of vibrant coloured ink, or gestural strokes of brush work culminate to form a complete and full-bodied composition, that echoes Lie’s therapeutic use of fragmented time.

As the year 2020 draws to a close, one feels that life has come to an unwelcome halt, yet the physical and mental remnants of living stand to attest the passage of time, however unpleasant. Stains of Time delves into this abstract dichotomy between time and temporality through the lens of our participating artists, each reminding viewers that time is ultimately quantified in conscious experience and is not limited by linear temporal measures. 

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