Like many art fairs and festivals around the world, Art Basel Hong Kong has dealt with a series of COVID-related delays throughout the pandemic. Fortunately, as restrictions are beginning to loosen, the event is finally set to reopen to the public in a limited capacity from May 27 to 29.
With that being said, Hong Kong, like much of Asia, is still experiencing stricter COVID precautions and the fair has thus opted to adopt a "hybrid" model similar to last year. For those unable to travel, HypeArt wants to bridge the gap by digitally celebrating a list of leading Asian galleries whose respective works will be available through our HypeArt Market. Amongst those on view, we're spotlighting the brilliant acrylic on canvas artwork by Belgium-based artist Kasing Lung. Represented by Kaikai Kiki Gallery, the artist is currently presenting a solo exhibition of new works at Kaikai Kiki Gallery that reference his prolific illustration background and characters from Chinese picture books as well as collectible figures.
Hajime Sorayama is currently showing a solo exhibition of work at Almine Rech in Paris. However, the iconic Japanese artist, who is also represented by NANZUKA, has also unveiled a glistening sculpture as part of his 'Sexy Robot' series. The 48x27x22-centimeter sculpture is the latest entry in a longstanding study of his where he imagines a slew of bionic women in domineering and erotic poses that explore futurist themes while celebrating the attraction of the female figure.
Represented by Hong Kong's JPS Gallery, Paul Hunter Speagle is an emerging artist whose vivid acrylic compositions comment on symbolic motifs — from ancient mythologies and biblical narratives, to capitalist iconography and human mortality. Speaking on his latest painting, Billions and Billions Served (2022), the artist noted: "In this world, the innocent are harmed. Powerful dictators and corporate villains that stomp in and force feed us their agenda cause so much pain and suffering to innocent humans and animals. They make us believe in them by selling us on the idea of fast convenience and that it’s easier to eat a quick mass produced cheeseburger or take a pill rather than really just facing the situation head on.They will continue to distract us from the truth with technology and false information. We are ‘the people of the world’ so we must continue to fight with love to stop this hate. It’s a global issue we must face together."
Similar to Speagle, Pu Yuingwei's painting, The Disintegration of Freedom 2022 is filled with various political undertones. Curator Yang Jian equates the work to an "impure definition of 'freedom' with the contradicting concept of [the] 'Statue of Red Liberty.'"
Lastly, Mátyás Erményi showcases a more subdued artwork that ties in both Soviet and post-Soviet motifs. In a statement on the piece, Queenie, founder of Double Q Gallery, said Erményi's portraits of "huge tree trunks full of burrow-like holes" depict the relationship between "unknown family trees...giving the strangely ambivalent feelings of kindness and fear, cuteness and melancholy."
Art Basel Hong Kong
Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Center
1 Expo Dr, Wan Chai, Hong Kong