Time & Memory

Contemporary Artists Group Show

Chen Qiulin | Chen Chunhao | Liu Zhuoquan
Ferhat Özgür | Shi Jinhua | Park Daecho

Curator: Calvin Hui

13 May (Sat) – 10 Jul (Tue), 2011
3812gallery | 10/F, 12 Wong Chuk Hang Road, Hong Kong

Curatorial Statement

Calvin Hui
Founder and Artistic Director

The creation of 3812 was formed by such a moment in time that for me is a lifetime memory. In the winter of 2010 I stood with friends precariously upon a ridge of ice staring down at the magnificent Vallée Blanche (The White Valley), Chamonix, 3812 metres above sea level. To ski there in the shadow of Mont Blanc was like stepping into a beautiful painting where ski turns carving in the snow left a signature as a painter leaves his brush strokes upon a canvas. Captivated by this moment in time, as I skied at the height of 3812 metres, I saw a new horizon and a fresh perspective, and I chose to pursue a new chapter in my life and 3812 was born.

In this way too, artists create artworks to capture time and leave memories; evoking within us emotions that last a lifetime.

Time is hard to grab at any one time; it is a fluid entity that is with us always. Artists attempt to imprison time and hold it within our memories; the photographer captures a moment that we remember every time we see that photo; an artist paints, a sculptor sculpts, a writer pens immortal words; all create memories that span generations and have the power to unite civilizations who share the memory created in that time.

Our world has become more diversified and we are now subjected to a deluge of information, images invade our lives constantly; contemporary today, forgotten tomorrow, so what is left behind? In a society dominated by information and imagery, how do we evaluate the difference between what we see and what we experience, or the gap between memories and reality?

“Time and Memory” intends to showcase the dynamism and diversity of Asian contemporary art, examining aspects of contemporary art that will make viewers aware of time and memory and the differences of culture through the works of the rising artists around Asia.

Participating artists have been chosen from among the artists I deeply admire and have faith in and who have shown their concerns for history, society and people, sharing their memory and experience. They create works that tell their own stories and reflect the memory of time.

Ferhat Özgür, whose photographs and videos explore the relationship between urban life and the individual, concentrates on examining social-political phenomena of Turkey. Similarly, Chen Qiu-lin has been exploring and documenting the rapid and tumultuous urbanization of Sichuan, her home province. Having had part of her own history taken away, she investigates the place of tradition and its relationship to the individual in this new China she now inhabits.

Liu Zhuo-quan’s meticulously hand painted glass bottles are a juxtaposition of the artist’s childhood memories of the ashes at Buddha’s altar and the broken glass fragments left in his body.

Park Dae-cho creates portraits of children affected by the trials of life yet at one with nature; he expresses that nature which although belabored by its steep climb through life, can maintain the innocence found in children. But while they appear innocent enough, these children bear the mark of desolation, loss and pain that can often be glimpsed in their eyes.

Chen Chun-hao uses over one million mosquito nails as his creative media. He used mosquito nails to imitate ancient masterpieces of traditional Chinese paintings, and through sketch-like landscape images, we are brought back in time to imagine how the ancient artists replicated nature onto paper.

As a Buddhist, Shi Jin-hua tries to explore a broader view; his works are contemporary, but their connotation corroborates the ancient Dhamma. Every pen he used in his works represents a life, encouraging each of us to reflect on our transient life.

Art is also a mirror to our memories and contemporary art is by its very nature defined by time, images created remain with an audience long after the modernity of the piece has passed. Memories too are defined by time, staying as fresh as the moment the recollection was created; for the experiences of our young age become the fine wines of our old age.

Here I would like to capture this wonderful moment to give my heartfelt thanks to all the participating artists for their support and trust. The opening of 3812 is a moment in time that I hope shall become a lifetime memory for all of you, and the artists gather here continue to hold time; creating memories that will last long after time for them, and you, has passed.

Mark Peaker
Partner & CEO of 3812 Contemporary Art Projects

Each of us lives with time; it is the very measure of our lives, from our first breath to our last. Time is the most precious thing we have; we cannot own time; it is something we waste in our youth and try desperately to slow as we grow old. Memories define our time, transporting us back to certain moments as though time has stood still; time and memory reflect our own lives, the lives of those we love, and the societies we live within. This exhibition is a moment in time that we hope will leave you with memories that linger from the creations of the artists.

The artists shown here have all captured time within their works; the present, the past, the future. Liu Zhou-quan’s bottles capture time and memory in perhaps a romantic way; a letter cast into the vastness of an ocean to be washed ashore perhaps in another century, a message in a bottle that the finder discovers links him or her to a time and a memory foreign to them. Yet the discovery creates a new time and memory, the past becomes the present with a future yet to unfurl.

Each artist has uniquely interpreted their own use of Time & Memory, be it personal triumph or tragedy or a broader view of the world we live within; Park Dai-cho’s haunting visions seen through the innocence of a child’s eyes remind us of the danger of time and the removal of memories; yet the hope that radiates from the eyes comforts us that perhaps the future with its memories yet to be created is secure.

We each live within our time but we share a common history. Tragic events such as earthquakes and tsunamis and the colossal loss of life reach out across national boundaries, political and religious ideologies; the time of the catastrophe becomes a memory that unites us all. Hiroshi Sugimoto believes that photography is a time machine, a method of preserving and picturing memory and time. With a poignancy that reflects the greater tragedy of his nation; the political landscape that these artists work within represent the feelings of a nation within this time and create for us memories that will reflect long after the time, the politician and the moment have passed.


Chen Qiulin, Reclining Woman, 67 x 85 x 57.5cm, Sculpture, Paper Mache, 2008

Chen Qiulin, Sitting Series, Waste Paper, 2008-2009, Edition 3:3

Chen Qiulin, The Garden No.5, Photograph, 145.5 x 118cm, 2007

Ferhat Özgür, Birthday Present, Acrylic on Canvas, 30 x 40cm, 2008

Ferhat Özgür, I Can Sing, Video, 7min, 2008

Ferhat Özgür, Joke, Watercolor on Paper, 40 x 30cm, 2008

Imitating the Ink Painting of Jin-Hao, Wudai Dynasty. N.02, Stainless Mosquito Nails on Canvas, 60 x 60cm, 2011

Liu Zhuoquan, Story of Insects, Glass Bottles, Mineral Color, Acrylic Paint, Oil Paint, Wooden Frame, 122cm x 64cm x 8cm, 2011

Park Daecho, Boom Boom 4, Transparent Print, Light Box, Change Color, 85 x 125cm, 2010 – 2011, Ed 1:5

Park Daecho, Desire 2, Transparent Print, 3D Lens, Light Box, Change Color, 74 x 80cm, 2010

Shi Jinhua, Pen Walking 18, Pencil, Acid Free Paper, 1126 x 207.9cm, 2007

Shi Jinhua, Pen Walking 42, Pencil, Paper, 109.7 x 79cm, 2007