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Artists throughout history create classics transcending time and space. In his Vie des formes (The Life of Forms), French art historian Henri Focillon notes that, “the very nature of art is the creation of forms, and if there are templates, it is not a creation.” Throughout centuries, artists have been creating their own visual forms from unique timeframes and perspectives. Behind forms, there may be a logic, a concept, a hypothesis or a question. Under the rapid changing society and the diverse cultural landscape, local artists also explore one’s perception in the city (or on the site).


Under the theme of “Spectrum”, Lei Ieng Wai, rationally overlaps geometric pieces with colour on canvases at a certain ratio, and subtly arranges them into virtual dimensional forms. The visual breakthrough of a two-dimensional plane into a multi-dimensional space shines with endless spectrum sequences. Revealing the “forms” of light, Lei presents the “light-chasing” habit of urbanites in the digital age, in stark contrast to ancients who indeed chased the light in darkness.


Centring on “time”, Lai Sio Kit has been meticulously observing the changing textures of the tiny city of Macao for years, depicting the traces of time through the “old tiles”. His “Tiles” series is a patchwork of oil paintings mimicking the age-worn tiles, which are laid in a dotted pattern over a large surface in a modern space, recreating the texture and visual statement of the city as time goes by.  


Contemplating what “value” is, Leong Chi Mou bases his “Alchemist” series on human consensus and reinforces its content as the form, bringing a new visual experience and revealing the value conflict between capitalism and human existence. The value of transaction tools, as evolved from consumer habits, lies in social trust, while Leong explores the ways in which art can be a totem of faith.


If Morandi's painting of bottles were a kind of ascetic practice, artists’ 'metaphysical' insight would have been shared by Manjushri. In this exhibition, the three ‘thinker-like’ painters, Lei Ieng Wai, Lai Sio Kit and Leong Chi Mou, are invited to present their recent excellent works, themed on spectrum of the times, texture of the city and value trust, respectively. The exhibition aims to explore how the artists have been able to aptly visualize their metaphorical intentions, which may be a key to interpreting the aesthetics of contemporary art.


Kitman Leong