Sun Museum
SML Tower
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Until 19 August 2017

“Tones of Festival” features 55 watercolour paintings by 14 artists, majority of which are recent works on iconic scenes of Hong Kong. Vegetable and meat markets, street eatery stalls, traditional temples, obsolescent fishing villages and modern bustling harbor are among the popular themes. They reveal the competent use of watercolour to enrich visual impact on audience.

Chloe Suen, Chair of the Simon Suen Foundation said, “To celebrate its second anniversary and the twentieth anniversary of Hong Kong’s return to China, Sun Museum is pleased to launch the Tones of Festival exhibition, reinstating watercolour to a respected master medium. The displayed works confirm that watercolour has always been the life sketching tool in Hong Kong, employed to depict the rich culture and dynamic transformation of the city. Sun Museum will continue its mission to promote Hong Kong and Chinese culture, offering the public opportunities to appreciate different art forms.”

sun museum

The Opening Ceremony of “Tones of Festival: Modern Hong Kong Watercolour” exhibition was held on 22 June. Distinguished guests and representatives of Sun Museum attended the ceremony, including  (Front Row): Mr. YANG Jian, Deputy Minister of Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the Hong Kong S.A.R. (5th left); Dr. CHAN Chung Bun, Chairman of Kwun Tong District Council (4th left); Dr. NG Chi Wa, Deputy Director of Leisure and Cultural Services (4th right); Mr. WONG Ting Chung, Chairman & CEO of Nameson Group Limited (3rd left); Dr. SUEN Siu Man, Founding Chairman of the Simon Suen Foundation (2nd left ); Mrs Mary SUEN, Founding director of the Simon Suen Foundation (1st left ); Mr. LUO Jiann, Department of Publicity, Cultural and Sports Affairs Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the Hong Kong SAR (3rd right); Mr. Samuel W K Yung, Member of National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (2nd right); Mr. Silas Yang, Member of National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (1st right).  (Back Row) – 11 artists including LAO U Kei (2nd left); LU Guo Yuan (3rd left); WONG Kum (4th left); WONG Chung Man (5th left); CHAN Cho Yan (6th left); KONG Kai Ming (7th right); SHEN Ping (6th right); MAK Siu Fung (5th right); CHEUK Hiu Kwong (4th right); TSE Lok Yau, Rainbow (3rd right); LIU Cheng Mui (2nd right), and Ms. Chloe Suen, Chairperson of Simon Suen Foundation (1st left) and Mr Yeung Chun-tong, Director of Sun Museum (2nd right).

Each participating artist has established a style of his own. KONG Kai Ming encapsulates split-second scenes through meticulous brushstrokes and veristic coloration, lending his nature scenery a strong sense of volume.

SHEN Ping applies quick brushstrokes and empty space to depict the effect of light and shadow. This simplistic style evokes the style of life sketching in watercolour.

CHEUK Hiu Kwong applies layers after layers of pigments so that colours penetrated one another. It creates a blurred and misty visual effect redolent of a rainy day.

TSUI Tin Yun paints with both acrylic and watercolour pigments to render perspective on light and shadow. Bathed in dim light, each of his figures strikes a different posture and their state of mind suffuses the painting.

CHAN Cho Yan creates atmospheric sceneries through variegated washes. The expressionistic brushstrokes and soft palette of colours imbue the paintings with a sense of tranquility away from all hustle and bustle.

CHAN Kau On integrates sketching and watercolour techniques to render various combinations of colour blocks and lines, weaving together vibrancy and prosperity of Hong Kong. He meticulously paints objects such as buildings and signboards, which augment the visual fullness.

LU Guo Yuan cancels out the transparent quality of watercolour as he repeatedly applies pigments to render opaque colours. He employs sharp colour contrast to depict light and shadow, enhancing volume and vigor of the paintings.

MAK Siu Fung was once a news photographer. He paints in a style reminiscent of comic drawing; he uses lines and soft colouring to depict daytime scenes. On the other hand, he paints with strong colours and washes to evoke brightly-lit nocturnal scenes.

WONG Chung Man is meticulous at rendering the texture of pictorial components. While painting with bright colours, he harmoniously preserves the transparency of paints. His paintings exude the flavor of oil painting.

WONG Kum specializes in portrait painting. He tailors background colours and body postures to accentuate the character of the portrait-sitters. He captures their state of mind through their gazes, achieving both physical and spiritual likeness. He painted Tung Chee-hwa and actor Qiao Hong.

LIU Cheng Mui exploits the transparency of watercolour in creating these abstract works. She creates new tones by overlapping pigments, enticing the viewer with its versatility.

LAO U Kei studied environmental architecture. He treats the effects of light effectively through his strong command of colour mixing and combination. He captures the spirit of his subjects that wittedly captivates the viewer.

AU YEUNG Nai Chim showcases four paintings that were created across five decades. Composed of plainer tones, those created in the 1950s capture the simple and modest spirit of the time. The later paintings entail a brighter and more diverse colouration, reflecting the steadfastly developing Hong Kong.

TSE Lok Yau, Rainbow is the youngest artist of this exhibition. Currently studying at Hong Kong University, she depicts mesmerizing moments during sunset and nighttime in Hong Kong in a semi-abstract manner. She accentuates the contrast of light and shadow, which varies under different light sources such as natural light and neon lights.

Yeung Chun Tong, Director of Sun Museum said, “Watercolour is a fascinating art medium with a lot of variations on technique. The application of watercolour may appear simple but it is hard to master. This exhibition showcases the creative talent of local artists and their varied styles. Sun Museum is honoured to collaborate with these artists, who vividly unveil the beauty and versatility of Hong Kong watercolour in different eras.”