Wednesday 1 August 2012

Quiet in Hong Kong

Tuesday. Last day.
This time I didn't want to run a friend marathon as I usually do when I come to Hong Kong. The main purpose was the photo shoot with Norm, see my new friends Calvin and Mark, and have a look at Siu-Yung's installation Les Lumières Imaginaires. Oh and see a couple of other friends whose schedule is normally so full that the best I can do is to play it by ear.

Daniel, one week after his operation. 

Two sunny afternoons with Calvin and Mark, the second of which was spent at the beach. It had been long since I last went to the beach with the word 'holiday' in mind - my holiday usually not lasting more than a couple of days before I ache to get back to my music. 
The sun was blazing. Mark drove us to South Beach, which Calvin advertised as one of the most beautiful beaches in the island. Well, to me, it was a beach... It reminded me of Provence, with the shape of the mountains,  their proximity to the sea, and the majestic stillness which surrounds them. What struck me was the view on the sea and the small islands. At around 5 o'clock when starts to set, it's pure magic for the eyes.
Calvin had had a trauma when he was a little boy of six and nearly drowned in the sea, if he had not been fished out of the water by a fisherman. Mark has been trying to get him to reacquaint himself with water for years. 
And today, Calvin managed to vanquish his fear and float on the water (and even swim a little).
"The first time in years" said Mark, incredulous and beaming.

I managed on my last day to visit Calvin's gallery in Aberdeen. It was on the tenth floor of an industrial building, which gave it a New York touch.
I had been exchanging lots of mails with Calvin after I met him on my last visit in May. I appreciated his modesty in spite of all his accomplishments, and also his refined mind. Our exchanges quickly became intimate as he felt the comfortable freedom to share buried feelings he had kept inside for years. His work is to be at the service of the others: his PR company, his gallery. Now he felt he had to address his inner self again. I was happy to be the listener.
The current exhibition was beautiful. A young artist from China. Dark, tormented, sinuous, and beautiful. his works (mainly drawings) reminded me of Egon Schiele's and some other expressionists. I suddenly thought that it would be provide a fantastic  visual counterpart to Han Mac Tu's book of poetry that I wish to do next year... Calvin will talk about it to the painter. That book could be my present for my mother's 80th birthday next year. I just hope I will do it in time...

Tuesday. Last day.
I had just been to the Agnès b. gallery to see Siu-Yung's Lumières Imaginaires before dropping by at Calvin's gallery to catch Lin Guosheng's exhibition - it was the last day before they take down the paintings.
SiuYung had posted plenty of images on the Internet. He also did a few digest in an attempt to show people the feel of the installation. But the best and only way is to go there and experience the whole journey in person. Snow, lights, stars and trees. A child's dream, a fantasy voyage, the womb of a wonderful imaginary animal. The lights were pulsating to the music, changing colours, blinking, flashing, sweeping... A girl sitting nearby with her father was totally captivated.

"Oh I like this! It's beautiful!!! I like his work! That's the exhibition for which you wrote the music? I want to see it" exclaimed Calvin, as I was flipping through the pictures I had taken the past two days to find those of him swimming in the sea. So the connection was now made.
"I met him at the Biennial of Architecture a few months ago. We talked a little, but I really liked what he did!"
Gilles was not so convinced when he saw Les Lumières Imaginaires on its opening day. He admitted that having hundreds of people around wasn't the perfect way to enjoy the installation. He said he would go again, but I doubt that he did. After I heard his reaction, I assumed Calvin's would be the same, and was happy to see his enthusiasm.
I wish this will lead to some interesting projects for SiuYung.

These few days in Hong Kong have been restful. I was pampered by Calvin and Mark, spent one day at the beach, saw the galleries, did the photo shoot with Norm, saw a few dear friends and could indulge in some CD shopping.

Now it's time to attack the serious work: Double Yellow Line with Huang Yi and that piece for the Berlin Symphony!

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