HO SIU KEE 10
Hewas born in 1964 in Hong Kong, and he is known for his performanceart, installation art and sculptures. Some of his notable worksinclude Women and Blood Series (1993-1995), Love the Fucking Country(1997, 2000) and Ten Steps One Kneel To Xin Ya (1996, 2003, 2005).
HoSiu Kee obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in Fine Art at theUniversity of Hong Kong in 1989. He then graduated at the CranbrookAcademy of Art, in Michigan USA with an MFA degree in Sculpture inthe year 1995. He went forward to be awarded a doctorate of Fine Artfrom RMIT University in 2003.1He is currently an administrator of arts at the Hong Kong ArtsCentre. He participates in many exhibitions worldwide and hasreceived numerous awards through his artwork.
Linkto the Great Art World
Heis a sculptor with an interaction with his own body. He used his bodyin the formation of works of art. By doing this, he took sculptureart to a whole new level. He started out by studying oil paintings atthe Chinese University. After graduation, Ho Siu Kee worked as ateaching assistant at the same university. The head of the Fine ArtsDepartment at the time, Mr. Cheung Yee, was a sculptor from the1960’s. This emerged as the first time that he ever encountered asculptor since his graduation. He became interested with his work andtheir relationship was developed. He first interacted with him as hisassistant, but later became his apprentice. This was a very importanttime for him because it was the start of a great journey of becomingan artist. He was fortunate to get the help that he much needed atthe time because there were few mentors during his time. He wasprovided with the type of training that he needed which was very rareduring the epoch.
HoSiu Kee Use of Material
Ashe explains that sculpturing is one dimensional and it is a greatskill to learn and understand, it is however not easy to pursue itsince it requires a lot of commitment especially, in Hong Kong. Thereason that make it is so hard to pursue in Hong Kong is due to thelack of space. While working with large pieces, there is need to havegood amount of space to work around. This lack of space limits a lotof Sculptors in Hong Kong. While he studied in the United States, HoSiu Kee did not know what field to pursue during his first semester.He had a chance to practice and this is when he would use treebranches to practice. He dedicated himself to this and came up with aspectacular sculpture of a man “walking on two balls” in 1995.2He spent full mornings and afternoons working on this. The sculpturethat he made was both abstract and geometrical in its form.
HisContributions to Art
Thesuccess of his first work was a great source of encouragement forhim. This made him have the desire to make better sculptures and takehis work further and produce more. From his first project, he startedproducing great works that became well recognized. He sought out waysto use both material and his own body to create art. He createdunique body experiences that have become the main focus of his work.Some people say that his work has a relation to religion, but he doesnot hold that opinion. He believes that people are free to interprethis work the way they desire. He says that his works are justrepresentations of the energy that he transforms from himself to hisart.
HoSiu Kee has been a full time artist for the past one decade, but healso holds an administrative position at the Chinese University. Heis conflicted by the administrative position but he says that hetries to strike a balance between the two. He believes that byworking as an administrator, makes him a better artist because thetwo jobs are complimentary the administrative role gets the workdone. After all, there are many people pursuing creative works in theadministrative sector.
HowHo Siu Kee has Shaped Art as a Whole
Inrecent years, Ho Siu Kee has been monitoring students as they goabout their creative works and after graduating they go into fulltime sculpturing. He commends this move and he expresses his likingfor the acceptance of the society to appreciate such forms of art.This is a way for art to develop and grow from the contemporary formsas people have now come to know.3As he teaches, Ho Siu Kee encourages student to try selling their artto get a sense of their monetary value. This helps them gauge theirwork and makes them focus on what they are good at that brings thenvalue. This helps them in the mastery of a skill in a specificmedium. As they graduate, they get to show what they have learnt andwhat they are good at. Ho Siu Kee has an appreciation for the artmarket and the gallery scene.4He teaches his students about the exposure they give to art and theresponse from showing off their work. Art gets to be viewed andappreciated by the audiences and they get a chance to share theirstory.
HoSiu Kee Viability
HoSiu Kee believes that traditionally crafted sculptures regardless oftheir forms are unique in their process of transferring the energythey hold into the changing objects. Energy gets transformed as onechanges the form of the object. One gets excited when a product ofhis starts taking a life form. Most of Ho Siu Kee works start withhis presentation of perfection in the transfer of his own energy. Hevisualizes and presents his own body through imagery. In recentyears, Ho Siu Kee has broadened his use and presentation of art toinstallations, photography and video. His representations are formsof communication about his thoughts, his own body, and how it relatesto his surroundings and other people.
HoSiu Kee Great Works and Most Recent
The constrained Body
Thisis his representation of punishment and torture. It represents howthe two cause a limitation in lives. A cry for freedom is wellrepresented through the manlike form made of metal. It is made out ofsteel which is a strong material. It was displayed in 2009 atdifferent places in Hong Kong including Grotto Fine Art, Hong KongArts Centre, Limlip Art Museum, Korea and Hong Kong Museum of Art.
The third eye
Thisis an eye sculpture. It is placed on the face. A glass ball isattached to the front part of the eye. By using refraction, when onelooks at the things around him/her, things seem to be upside down. Itgives a very unusual perception of the world. Ho Siu Kee representsthis with two pictures one which is positive with a man in anupright position and the other portraying negativity with the man inan upside down position. Red lines are used to show how lightrefracts in the eye.
Walking on Two Balls
Somewould say that this is the creation he is most proud of. He startedout by creating two wooden spheres after carving them out of wood.The spheres are a representation of the universe as described in themany different cultures. Balancing on the two balls and moving acrossthe room was a great challenge for him. But he had to do it in orderto show the uncertainties’ and insecurities of people’s dailylives. He recorded this performance on video to keep it in recordsand develop other art forms.
HoSiu Kee imitates the behavior of Buddhist monks in their daily livesthrough walking, standing, sitting and lying in this work. Duringmovement, the human body goes through certain physical and biologicalreactions and this is what he intends to capture in his work. Theinteraction with the environment is also an important aspect of thiswork.
Ithas always been Ho Siu Kee’s dream to fly and he expresses this inhis art work Flying Machine. To defy the boundaries of gravity, heuses his own body. Even though he does not actually fly, in this artwork, he shows how it would be and the fulfillment one would get fromit. He shows how imagination is used in the development of greatmachinery and encourages invention. He also encourages the use of ownbodies to provide a wholesome body experience in viewing art. It ishow he expresses his freedom with art that makes him such aninspiring artist.
HoSiu Kee Most Famous Work
HoSiu Kee most favorite work is sit/stand/lie. They are expressedextending into different rooms. They are seen as a critical turningpoint in his creativity. He is well praised by artist such as ChanYuk-Keung Kurt because of this work.5Ho Siu Kee describes his view about this work by relating to itssimplicity and relates it to drinking pure water.
Media:Video and Photography
HoSiu Kee also explores different media such as photography and use ofvideo. His works aim is to spark a conversation about various issuesin the society. His works also include self reflection, like when heuses mirrors and mirror imagery. He intends to bring out theinvisible to the visible rim. It helps the viewers understandthemselves in the process of uncovering his meanings.6By uncovering peoples inner thoughts, he hopes to show the world asit is with good and evil in hopes of leading others to the correctpath and possibly a happier life.
Itis a great idea for Ho Siu Kee, as an artist, to use his own body toportray various art forms. It is also very unique as very few peoplepresent art in this form. At the same time, it open people’s mindsto the different possibilities art can take, and emphasizes the factthat art is indeed very diverse.
Carroll,J. Mark. Aconcise history of Hong Kong.Lanham, Md.: Rowman & Littlefield, 2007.
Elkins,James. Whatdo artists know?University Park, Pennsylvania: The Pennsylvania State UniversityPress, 2012.
Ho,Siu-kee, Henry Au-yueng, and Jennifer H. Au-yueng. HoSiu-Kee: Body Gesture : Grotto Fine Art Ltd., 6 to 23 December 2006 :Hong Kong Arts Centre, 9 to 28 December 2006.Hong Kong: Grotto Fine Art, 2006.
Hobbs,Robert C. HongKong Now!Richmond, Va: Anderson Gallery, School of the Arts, VirginiaCommonwealth University, 1997.
Kelly,William. Artand Humanist Ideals: Contemporary Perspectives with Artworks Selectedfrom the Collection of the Archive of Humanist Art.South Yarra, Vic: Macmillan Australia, 2003.
Sullivan,Michael. ModernChinese Artists: A Biographical Dictionary.Berkeley [u.a.: Univ. of California Press, 2006.
Tsong-Zung,Chang, and Serenella Ciclitira. HongKong Eye: Contemporary Hong Kong Art.Milano: Skira, 2012.
1 Sullivan, Michael. Modern Chinese Artists: A Biographical Dictionary. Berkeley [u.a.: Univ. of California Press, 2006. Pp 84.
2 Tsong-Zung, Chang, and Serenella Ciclitira. Hong Kong Eye: Contemporary Hong Kong Art. Milano: Skira, 2012. Pp 102.
3 Hobbs, Robert C. Hong Kong Now! Richmond, Va: Anderson Gallery, School of the Arts, Virginia Commonwealth University, 1997. Pp 68.
4 Carroll, J. Mark. A concise history of Hong Kong. Lanham, Md.: Rowman & Littlefield, 2007. Pp 103.
5 Kelly, William. Art and Humanist Ideals: Contemporary Perspectives with Artworks Selected from the Collection of the Archive of Humanist Art. South Yarra, Vic: Macmillan Australia, 2003. Pp 96.
6 Elkins, James. What do artists know? University Park, Pennsylvania: The Pennsylvania State University Press, 2012. Pp 48.