Curator / Dou Chai Arts
Participating Artists / Kennith Chan, Sam Chan, Siumou Chow, Ann Huang, Jason Ju, Jacky Lam, So Ka Wai, Juno Tsoi
Story Writer / Yuen Yik Tin
Project Planner / Joanne Cheng
Project Management / Helen Lo
Exhibition ＆ Graphic Design | Eddie The Studios
Exhibition Production / MilliES Studio
Editor / Au Mei Ling
Translator / Victoria Wong
Key Visual Photographer / Erika Fung
Researcher / Skylar Kwan
In 2018, our Centre celebrated our 10th year anniversary with The Pulse of Nature project. Through publication and exhibition - from written works, drawings, photography to sculptures - the project highlighted the intertwined relationship between people and nature from the perspectives of humanities, society, architecture, natural history, zoology, botany, and many more.
Five years have since passed. As the Centre enters its 15th year, we are also marking the end of an era. Five years ago, we started our explorations from the Centre and wandered across Mid-Levels West; today, the hills guide our paths back to the Centre, now surrounded by the trees that have accompanied us every step of the way. There is the Pine and Chinese Banyan who weathered the blows of typhoon Mangkhut; the Ivy Tree who blossoms every winter; the Common Red-stem Fig who feeds the Masked Palm Civets; the Turn-in-the-Wind who dances with the breeze and the Brisbane Box who is silently perched on the hill behind us.
Therefore our new exhibition is themed as Treeology. We launched an open call to collect exhibition proposals, of which a proposal based on fallen trees was selected. After months of preparation, we are pleased to present this exhibition under the name Treeology - Tracing the Secret Life of Secret. How many secrets are kept inside the trees? How many stories do trees tell? With just enough curiosity and imagination, can we sense their pulse and experience the connection between us?
We give our sincere thanks to all who have participated in the open call, the curatorial team Dou Chai Arts and all participating artists of this exhibition, and Eddie The Studios’ design and production team. To all our friends, old and young, who have wandered with us under the trees, around the hills, and across the city in the past 15 years: thank you.
We are grateful to all our neighbours - the plants, animals and all beings in and around our Centre at Lung Fu Shan. Thank you for filling Lung Fu Shan with such vitality and possibilities, making it a beautiful place to be.
from the Curator
While there are trees, there is life.
— A Moment of Innocence
What do we see in the life of a tree?
On one hand, humans tend to trim, transplant, transform, cut down trees, and change the appearance of trees into their own use; on another, they write and peer into the inner world of our society through their observation, recording, experimentation and reimagination of our trees. In a highly man-made city like Hong Kong, it is easy to be oblivious of our surrounding foliage. It is only when a tree collapses during a typhoon, or when a stone wall tree is forced to be felled, that the life and death of a tree would attract any public attention.
Trees provide habitats, nutrients, and support for a diverse species, forming an intertwined and indispensable ecosystem with all living things. The death of trees is therefore not an end, but a cycle of life that returns to nature. When trees fall, they can be used as raw materials for buildings and tools, and continue to accompany humans in their daily lives in other ways. Its reimagined and personified life touches us deeply and makes us ponder about life and death, providing the creative inspiration for all the artists participating in this exhibition.
All artworks are created around real fallen trees. Inspired by various parts of a tree, the exhibition recreates a scene where a tree has fallen, displaying works in and around the Centre. Throughout this multi-sensory exhibition, the audience is invited to experience a journey of life that belongs both to trees and humans, and to plant the seeds of nature in their hearts.
Sometimes it takes a tree to fall, for us to see even more.
1/ Fragrances of a Fell Tree - Juno Tsoi
It is not until after a storm that we can truly experience the petrichor, reminding us of the many seasons we shared with our trees.
2/ Sprouts - Jacky Lam
How many sprouts lie between collapsed trees?
3/ A Cycle of Our Origins - Kennith Chan
Indeed, we are all just a part of nature.
4/ The Anatomy Lesson of A Tree - Jason Ju
It’s astonishing how transformations in one living being could nourish another life form.
5/ Phantom Limbs - So Ka Wai
Once separated from its trunk, do these limbs feel free, or are they helplessly wandering?
6/ Tree Murmurs - Sam Chan x Ann Huang
Faintly, each pulse confirms its every living moment.
7/ A Tour Around Scattered Twigs - Siumou Chow
Awaiting germination of the next destiny