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Art, I believe, is prevalent in everyone’s lives. However,
where I grew up, few saw it as an important aspect of life. art has been
an important element in my growth; I have always had a strong
determination to study Fine Art, and have always aimed to achieve high
standards in the art I produce. I grew up in Hong Kong with a local family that has
very conservative and traditional values; this did not limit my artistic
expression in the slightest- in fact, it has encouraged me to expand past the
restraints of my upbringing. People of my culture view education as
merely an entry into a profession; I intend to change that.

The Central Saint
Martins Foundation course I attended this year has enabled me to think and
perceive life in a more sophisticated and refined fashion. In one short year, I
have learnt to approach the world with an artistic manner- to view everything
as a work of art, to derive inspiration from the world around me, to place
equal value in the process of making as I do with my final outcomes. This has
changed myself as a person and the way I work drastically- I found myself in a
place where I could develop my ideas independently, free from any restrictions;
I had radical freedom to create art. To a certain extent, this scared me- but
my fear was overridden by my enthusiasm. I aim to take this anticipation and
sense of elation and use it as my driving force to create more conceptual
artwork in the future.

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Throughout the course, I was exposed to a variety of
conceptual artwork, and was introduced to many artists who work controversially
and conceptually, such as Zhang Huan and Francis Alys. These artists challenge
the conventional interpretation of art being physical matter and create art
that take into consideration space, time, and presence, breaking through the
traditional perceptions of art. This is prevalent in Zhang Huan’s ‘Family Tree’, a performance piece presented
as a series of photographs that highlighted the political restraints in China.

Zhang’s political and radical concepts influenced the development of my artwork;
‘Loneliness – ??’ was a political piece I
created that illustrated the problems of wealth disparity in Hong Kong and the
incompetence of the Hong Kong government. I had a growing interest in creating
political art in the previous two years- this led me to develop my artwork more
broadly, and I started creating art that incorporated other aspects of life
that I also regard important and significant.


Thus, in the present moment, I am creating self-reflective artwork that is
born out of experience, and address personal and taboo issues that the general
public usually refrain from discussing about or shy away from- I wish for the
audience to connect to my work on a personal, emotional level, to feel the
fervency and vehemence in my work. I achieve this through combining poetry with
visual arts; poetry and literature is an essential element in my artwork. There
is a certain ineffable beauty I find within poetry and literature, and the
poignancy I feel is strongly illustrated through my writing; the exploration
between beauty and pain, the questioning of human morality- these themes are
all prevalent in my writing and my artwork.

Having recently read extracts from ‘Telling
Stories With A Life Of Their Own’ by author Edward Platt, I found a strong
connection with, as mentioned previously, artist Francis Alys. The philosophy
of man is a prevalent theme in Alys’ works- I found this relevant to me and the
art I create, as philosophy is also a source of my inspiration. Having studied
HL Philosophy in IB, I found that philosophy is an important element in Fine
Art- it reflects the relations between reality and man, and recognises the
connections between individuals and the world; the perpetual relationship between
Fine Art and Philosophy is undeniable and inevitable. Studying philosophy has
allowed me to become more visually and textually articulate, and has allowed me
to further develop my thinking and my approach to art.


The poeticism of Alys’ pieces combined with strong political contexts
challenge social norms and accentuate the idea of a ‘romanticised tragedy’; I
found this element relevant to my work: the beautifying of something ugly. To
work in such way and produce such artwork as Alys does is something I have
always strived to achieve. Individuality, an important aspect of art that I
previously lacked, I believe I am now beginning to find.

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