Rebellion in Hong Kong Art – 不可抗力 – 香港刺點畫廊


Ho Siu Nam exhibited his latest photography series “The White of the Tree” (2018). The work records the face of the super typhoon Mangkhut that hit Hong Kong the same year. The strongest tropical cyclone since the 1980s caused extensive damage to Hong Kong. Thousands of tree branches broke and were uprooted. The artist captured the body and wounds of the trees after the natural disasters, recording the vulnerability of the individual under strong violence, such as during the shooting.
In addition to the photographic works, Ho Siu Nam also exhibited two wood carvings. Every living plant, in the time and space that it survived, must have been associated with people and things around it with different stories and memories. For these works he used the names of daughter, bridge, and mother.
People set up monuments for heroes and memorable events; Ho Siu Nam commemorates trees. Just as after the typhoon, people will return to ‘normal’ as soon as possible, and will not think twice when they quickly clear the broken branches and leaves, and all the things that hinder normality will disappear.
Mr Ho once left the sky blank in one of his photographic works, and then randomly filled in the squares in 12 colors. He deliberately chose only yellow, blue, green and red to fill the sky. ‘Yellow’ represents demonstrators who advocate peace, rationality, non-violence and support for renegotiation. This color is derived from the 2014 Yellow Umbrella Movement. ‘Blue’ stands for those who support the government and support the police, ‘Green’ is the uniform color of the Hong Kong anti-riot police, and ‘Red’ is the color of the Chinese government. The four symbolic colors in the photo shrouded the earth, while they summarized and fully reflected the current social situation in Hong Kong.

Every Daily 7

When I was a child there were only iron bars on the window and no glass. Every time a rainy day came, my mother would place a long rubber sheet on the window to protect us from the wind. Since childhood, Ho Siu Nam ’s impression of the pitted rubber sheet is to protect his family and guard his home. In the recent political movements in Hong Kong, anti-riot police often use long sheets to protect themselves. Whether confronted with demonstrators or advancing to disperse people, the police hold up long shields and knock on the ground to create a giant whistle to warn demonstrators. Is the role of these anti-riot long shields for protection or to drive people away? Because of the similarity of the shape of the windshield and the police anti-riot shields, the artist copied a whole row of anti-riot shields with transparent pitted panels and installed them on the exhibition window. Ho Siu Nam ’s self-made rubber sheet long shield is also titled “could not be intimidated artist”. What about the general public? What can they do?

Luke Ching Chin Wai

There is another response to the political movement: the sponge bomb. Despite its cute name, it is obviously a lethal weapon. The artist gives it a bright color to make it even more appealing. The truth is that the momentum of shooting with firearms is definitely not the general idea of a ‘sponge’.
Since June, a wave of millions of people have marched and demonstrated in the streets and more have continued to emerge. During the protesting, everyone has shouted slogans and made demands. Ho Siu Nam recorded many demonstrations and recorded these slogans. The audience is invited to listen carefully, understand the demands of the demonstrators, and understand the mentality of the demonstrators at this time. In the latter part of the video, the impact begins. When the exhibition opened, the movement was still developing; what will happen in the future?
After the super typhoon Mangkhut, Hong Kong people who are eager to restore their city’s appearance will redefine the word ‘normal’ in this ongoing political, man-made storm. As a resident of Hong Kong, I have experienced countless typhoons, lived in public housing, and been touched by the development process of this political movement from different perspectives. After viewing this “force majeure” solo exhibition, there is an indescribable deep experience in my heart.

Leung Suk Ching

Volume 34 no 3 January – February 2020 pp 10-11
Hong Kong Blindspot Gallery September 10th – November 2nd, 2019



兩位藝術家:程展緯與何兆南,於香港刺點畫廊一起舉辦雙個展 液化陽光 | 不可抗力”

展期:2019910日  -112
















何兆南出他最新的攝影系列《樹的留白》(2018)。作品記錄了2018年超級颱風山竹吹襲香港後的面貌。這個自1980年代以來最強的熱帶氣旋對香港造成廣泛破壞,成千上萬的樹木裂枝斷幹,橫斜歪倒日常所見的石屎森林面貌完全變形,景像撼動人心。藝術家捕捉了樹木在天災重創後的軀體和傷口, 記錄了在強大暴力下個體的脆弱,同時在拍攝的過程中,發現倒下的樹木很快被走,從中可見整個城市對回復正常狀態迫切渴望。










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Derek Guthrie
29/03/2020 2:33 am

What a good question. What is normal? I wonder if the concept of normal is the same in Chinese culture as it is in western culture.

Carlos Benitez
29/03/2020 7:22 am
Reply to  Derek Guthrie

Hi Derek,
Thank you for your comment. In your opinion, what is normal in western culture?

Al in Washington DC
29/03/2020 1:00 pm
Reply to  Derek Guthrie

Normal is what people are used to.

Carlos Benitez
28/03/2020 4:31 pm

Leung Suk Ching wrote, “After the super typhoon Mangkhut, Hong Kong people who are eager to restore their city’s appearance will redefine the word ‘normal’ in this ongoing political, man-made storm.” Redefining what is “normal” is what people in most countries are currently forced to do in the face of this super typhoon called Covid-19, while living their various levels of lock-downs and quarantines. What is normal? How is normal reflected in our artwork?

Mary Fletcher
11/02/2020 5:17 am

Brave work. I suppose the colours in the sky were explained in a key?

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