Come for the Instagram pix, stay for the art


Work of art: The En Voyage art exhibition in Hong Kong will feature around 200 paintings by Monet. — China Daily/ANN

Hong Kong: The city has seen a deluge of immersive art exhibitions recently, and there are more in the pipeline.

These include the highly anticipated En Voyage with Claude Monet, co-presented by local art and tech company ChillHoYeah and the Belgium-based creative studio Dirty Monitor.

The latter is a trailblazer in the field of 3D video mapping, having produced stunning, 360° immersive video installations and virtual reality experiences based on works by Vincent van Gogh and Gustav Klimt.

Featuring around 200 paintings by the French impressionist Claude Monet (1840-1926), En Voyage will also see the launch of a state-of-the-art exhibition space in Cultural Plaza, next to Xiqu Centre in the West Kowloon Cultural District.

“Over 21 high-tech projectors and speakers will create a digital experience based on the historical paintings of the master of impressionism,” says Julien-Loic Garin, director of arts and culture for the upcoming exhibition.

Garin had a role in bringing Claude Monet: The Spirit of Place to the Hong Kong Heritage Museum in 2016.

Garin reveals that the show has been designed as a “continuous journey, allowing us to discover Monet’s evolution in terms of technique, topics and vision”.

The proliferation of shows where artists are able to cajole viewers into happily suspending disbelief leads to concerns about the ways in which the gifts of technology are being used to create immersive art.

Might the art that overwhelms the senses also stimulate the mind? Persuade the viewer into applying a degree of intellectual rigor to make the experience more meaningful?

Tobias Berger, head of art at Tai Kwun, has seen it happen recently.

While Swiss artist Pipilotti Rist’s ongoing Behind Your Eyelid exhibition is drawing its share of Instagrammers, a number of them seem to be staying back for a deeper engagement with the art.

“I have never seen so many good, funny, amazing comments about an exhibition at Tai Kwun before,” says Berger, who curated the show.

“Viewers are really touched.” — China Daily/ANN

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