Hong Kong Hardware Street 香港五金街

Scotland_edited_edited.jpg

2018

50cms (W) x 40cms (H)

Oil on Panel

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Hong Kong is one of my favourite cities in the world, and one of the places I'd love to live one day. I'd describe it as an intriguing mix of British and Chinese cultures, where the biggest influence is Cantonese. When I came here from Britain before I lived in China, it felt like it was a Chinese city. Later, when i'd lived in China it felt like a British city, and then when I went back for a third time I could tell the Cantonese aspects.

If you didn't know, in China the most common characters are simplified Chinese, whereas in HK, they still use traditional chinese characters. People also typically speak English (due to the until-recent British occupation). I tried to capture this in the signage. The whole city is extremely densely populated, with businesses on multiple floors of every building screaming out for attention. You also often can't tell you're in the middle of multiple high-rise buildings because the neon signs obstruct your view of almost everything above eye level; so the only place you can see sky in this is in the back window of the taxis in the middle background. It's slightly grimy and messy, but it's one of the most expensive places to live in the world and one of the commercial centres of the east. 

I love it; and it's the kind of place you can pretend you're in the middle of some of the scenes in Blade Runner, Gremlins or Fifth Element. That's what I was trying to capture here. For those who can't read Chinese much, the white sign in the middle with 2 blue characters is my name in simplified Chinese.

香港是我在世界上最喜欢的城市之一,也是我有朝一日想要生活的地方之一。我觉得香港是英国和中国文化的有趣组合,其中最大的区别是粤语。在我来中国之前,第一次从英国到香港,感觉香港像一座中国城市。后来,生活在中国,再去香港时,觉得它更像是一座英国城市。再后来第三次去香港时,可以听出语言方面的区别:粤语。

如果您不知道,在中国大陆,通用的是简体中文,而在香港,仍然使用繁体中文。人们通常讲英语(由于近代英国殖民)。我试图在画里的指示牌上体现了这一点。香港这座城市人口极为稠密,每栋建筑物的各个楼层上的商铺都在大声吆喝,以引起人们的注意。通常也无法分辨自己身处多高的高层建筑中,因为霓虹灯会遮挡您几乎所有视线以上的视野;因此,唯一可以看到天空的地方是中间背景的出租车的后窗。香港这座城市有点肮乱,但它是世界上最昂贵的居住地之一,也是东方的商业中心之一。

我喜欢香港;在这座城市,你可以假装自己处于《银翼杀手》,《小魔怪》或《第五元素》中某些场景的中间。这也是我试图在这幅画里表现得。提示不太懂中文的人,中间那个白色指示牌上的两个蓝色字符是我的简体中文名字。