‘Looking is not seeing,’ said graphic designer Henry Steiner. To him, looking is an active quest for solutions. We look to uncover. Since Steiner’s arrival in Hong Kong in 1961, his keen eye for local visual language has opened a new horizon in the field of graphic communication, contributing to Hong Kong’s visual culture in transformative ways.
Beyond clear communication of information, graphic language persuades. Steiner discovers concepts and develops rhetoric to influence the audience. Like speech, rhetoric can be used visually, through symbols, contrast, stories, appropriation, and systems. These approaches are not mutually exclusive, but are used in combination to bridge communications that are efficient and, in Steiner’s eyes, intelligent.
Looking is not only seeing, but also an active process of questioning. Throughout this exhibition, HKDI Gallery poses questions through Henry Steiner’s work and ways of thinking, and provide opportunities to challenge assumptions in our everyday experiences with graphic language.