10 Chancery Lane Gallery presents Remembering Days, Forgetting Time, by prominent Hong Kong artist Carol Lee Mei-kuen. Lee will include works from her recent exhibition at the Xi’an OCAT Museum curated by Karen Smith. The exhibition will also open with the launch of the book Light Years in Letters: A Postcard Project. The book is a selection of postcards created by Lee in the past five years as part of her postcard project, which began in 2008.
Since 2005, Lee has employed time as both the material and means of her art making. Harnessing the changes in light and its reaction with paper, she has made time and space two dimensional and visible, presenting the relationship between time and history/memories in pictorial form. Lee’s works cross the boundaries of various traditional media—photography, printmaking, painting—and her works have gradually become her own language for art expression, which she names “time writing” or “time drawing”. In Lee’s Origin series, circular works on paper are displayed with a selection of dried flowers, plants and insects. An exploration of the origins of humanity and the preservation of animal and plant life through fossilization, Origin progresses the artist’s “time drawing” to a new level of meaning, linking her artistic process to larger and more profound concepts. The works are both delicate and intricate, blossoms of flora and fauna fill the circular spaces after time and sunlight have left their marks.
Carol Lee Mei-kuen states, “It is because only when time passes that we can perceive everything around us. Time is no longer linear. We travel through days and years, going back to the past to tie it with the present. By so doing, we can again read in detail those stories we considered lost in the threads of time. Time, in the past and at present, starts a new form of life. The lightness of its being translates into thousands of words.”
10 Chancery Lane Gallery director Katie de Tilly comments, “Carol Lee Mei-kuen has been an active artist in Hong Kong since the late 1990s, her pursuit of linking history, memory and the escapable aspect of time has led her into a unique art practice of burning light onto paper with the sun. A practice she has been following for several years now. Carol Lee’s works on paper become photograms of humanity, carrying a unique voice of Hong Kong’s past and encompassing a shared experience that all can relate.”
Lee’s postcard project is an interactive and ongoing series, in which she explores communication, writing and time. A new set of postcards will be included in the Setouchi Triennale 2016 in Japan in the summer session (from July 18 to September 4) and autumn session (from October 8 to 6 November).