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27 April 2024: In Focus: Simon Liu 2: Life as Usual


In Focus: Simon Liu 2: Life as Usual

Curated by Simon Liu and featuring seven short films by Hong Kong artists spanning the last 45 years, Life as Usual surveys the often surreal and uncanny underbelly of life in the metropolis through gestures of disobedience, imaginary landscapes, and desires for an alternative future.

Ellen Pau, 1990, 6 min

Combining television footage of swimming contests across Victoria Harbour in the 1960s with other archival sources, Diversion reflects on a watershed moment in Hong Kong history.

Tugging Diary
Yan Wai Yin Winnie, 2021, 16 min

Tugging Diary presents a loose documentation of a footbridge in Hong Kong, corresponding with the rise of the Anti-Extradition Law Amendment Bill Movement, from August 2019 to January 2021.

Wong Ping’s Fables 2
Wong Ping, 2019, 14 min

Wong Ping’s Fables 2 alternates between the tales of a wealthy imprisoned cow and a conjoined triplet rabbit to explore issues including greed, incarceration, digital consumerism, narcissism, and desire.

For Some Reasons
Ellen Pau, 2003, 7 min

In For Some Reasons, each Chinese character is a typeface, and each typeface has a story. Changing a single Chinese character within this turn of phrase leads to a shift in meaning.

Let’s Talk
Simon Liu, 2023, 11 min

“On the 25-year anniversary of Hong Kong's handover from Great Britain to Mainland China, directives for ‘a new era’ promising stability and prosperity are found on murals and public slogans. Meanwhile, uneasy thoughts cast unusual shades on daily life. Old feelings arise, a pressure builds – conjuring distant voices from the concrete, never quite getting their point across. Something calls for repair, but we can't just talk it out, can we?” – Simon Liu

Letter to the Young Intellectuals of Hong Kong
Mok Chiu-yi & Li Ching, 1978, 15 min

Letter to the Young Intellectuals of Hong Kong cuts and pastes aspects of commercial, personal, and experimental cinema, resulting in an invaluable record of the anti-imperialist movements in British-controlled Hong Kong. Beginning with what appear to be outtakes from a documentary about a Henry Moore exhibition at the Hong Kong Museum of Art, the film progresses through a series of aesthetic manoeuvres – over-dubbing, painting directly onto the film, et al – through which Mok turns the material into an incendiary missive to Hong Kong's youth.” – George Clark

Song of the Goddess
Ellen Pau, 1992, 7 min

Song of the Goddess pays tribute to the famous Cantonese Opera duo, Yam Kim-fai and Pak Suet-sin. In Pau’s video, the women’s mirrored selves appear as strongly dualistic reflections, referencing their love on and off the screen.

Followed by Q&A with Simon Liu

Presented as part of Open City Documentary Festival