THE MEMORIES OF TOMORROW
CURATED BY DONG BINGFENG
With controversies flying around about what systems or concepts represent, what is certain is that photography is always closely and inseparably related to mass media, the process of creating art history, and its systems and fields. Think again about how much incredible photography is being produced today. In other words, photography is not there to create myths, but more to reflect on the key to artistic myth creation.
Thus, these problems concerning photography have led to more questions being posed about the image. Hong Kong based artist Lau Wai explores the issues of personal identity in the project, Tomorrow's Memory. Her attention isn’t on artistic nostalgia either.
Secondhand Time is the work of Nobel Prize winner Svetlana Alexandrovna Alexievich. In her book, the author recites private histories of the Soviet Union’s “whispering era” in the form of oral interviews. Lau Wai’s work also conveys the quality of “second-hand time” in the history of private return visits that are both clearcut and illusory. At the same time, these images act like mirrors tempting historical ghosts. While we look at these images, the body and the face seem to be able to rewind and traverse the deep consciousness of these images in the form of spatial expression. This forms a rhythmical thought movement and thought exchange. Obviously, the memory process and nostalgia caused by the artist have nothing to do with the form of ideal life, and likewise have nothing to do with any grand narrative of capitalist history, but as the German scholar Aleida Assmann said: “It is a kind of strange fabric composed of space and time, intertwined with the absent, sensible present and the past of history.”
Lau Wai, I'm just Wan Chai girl, 135 cm x 75.7 cm, Archival pigment print, 2018. © Courtesy of the artist
Lau Wai, Queens Road West 040, 132 cm x 76 cm x 10 cm, Duratrans, LED steel lightbox, 2018 © Courtesy of the artist
Lau Wai, Victoria Harbour 00S, 132 cm x 96.5 cm x 10 cm, Duratrans, LED steel lightbox, 2018 © Courtesy of the artist
Lau Wai, Walking to Nam Kok Hotel, single channel video, 03' 24", 2018 2018 © Courtesy of the artist
Lau Wai, My name is Gwenny Lee, 135 cm x 75.8 cm, Archival pigment print, 2018 © Courtesy of the artist