Archives for category: what is out there?

I love traditional Chinese shadow puppet shows for their simple elegance. They usually depict old folk tales. The set up is quite basic- simple light, music, screen and puppets that are made of cardboard or thin coloured acrylic sheets. Controllers move individual puppets around to bring the story to life.

Recently I saw a great show (see above) – the fight between the Snipe and the Clam 鹬蚌相争. The snipe had a flight with the clam. The snipe attacked the clam with its beak and the clam held on to it. Both refused to let go. A fisherman came by and netted them both.

Like most Chinese folk tales, there is always a lesson to be learnt from the story. The lesson of this one is: ‘If both sides refuse to compromise, a third-party will take advantage of the situation.’

Chinese shadow puppet show
The snipe was about to ‘fly in’, as controlled by the lady on the left of the screen. Continue reading about the making of the shadow puppet show >>

Advertisements

We closed out 2010 by taking a ride on the new DHL Hong Kong Balloon.

It’s a ride in a tethered helium balloon, launched from a park in West Kowloon. We were lucky enough to be one of the earliest passengers as they were carrying out a soft launch. It’s a truly awesome experience.

DHL Hong Kong Balloon 
It was a little frustrating as we weren’t aware that for safety reasons the balloon will only fly when the wind is below 15km/h. So after our first trip to the grounded balloon in the morning, we were told to return in the afternoon, when they expected the wind to have died down. Luckily it did, so up we went. Continue reading >>

Fancy having a ride? You can also pick a tiger or a lion….

It was the most surreal yet amazing experience I have ever had! This was how I felt after I came out from Bindu Shards– one of the latest pieces of work by the brilliant light artist James Turrell at the Gagosian Gallery in London.

After walking through a dark corridor, I was greeted by a lady in a white laboratory coat, standing under the shadow of a gigantic white metal sphere and its platform. After confirming my identity, I was asked to sign a form to confirm that I do not have epilepsy and nor am I pregnant- it sounded like I was about to experience something dramatic! I was also asked if I would like it ‘soft’ or ‘hard’ as if I was going to have an egg! Apparently it was to do with the intensity of the experience. ‘Since you are confident, I suggest you go for hard’, the lady said. ‘Ok! Hard it is!’ I answered with great anticipation.

After taking my coat and shoes off, I was ‘wheeled’ into the sphere on a ‘bed’- exactly like when I had my MRI scan, including the part when I was given a headphone to wear and a panic button to get out if I felt claustrophobic half way. ‘I need a panic button to see an art installation?’ I thought. The whole build-up was exciting but also a little spooky! Strangely, she suggested that I take off my glasses as I would have a better experience. ‘I do not need my glasses in order to “see” an installation?’ I was intrigued.

Even though I was aware of that fact that technically I was lying down, looking up to  the inside of hemisphere, I felt that I was engulfed by blueness. There was no beginning and no end. The lady was right about no glasses as my vision would have been framed by them unnecessarily. A lot of dark patterns started to emerge first slowly then very quickly in different rhythms. I felt a bit unease and for a split second, I started to worry what if I actually had epilepsy without knowing it? Before I managed to finish this question in my head, I noticed that tears started to drop alongside my face. Continue reading >>

Surround Me is a series of sound installations, which only takes place on Saturdays and Sundays in a few locations in the City of London. It was created by Susan Philipsz (edited: winner of  Turner Prize 2010) and commissioned by Art Angel.

Winky says:
It was strange to walk around the city of London during the weekend. It was deserted. We were left with the streets, architecture and the space created in between. Arriving at Change Alley, I had no idea what to expect. Standing right in the middle of the junctions between four alleys, I was a little confused. Just when I wanted to ‘phone a friend’, a lady started singing ‘New Oyster, new oyster……’ The singing started at the other end as well and the sound was echoed by the surrounding buildings. The ghostly voice subtly unfolded history of the place. It was magical.    Continue reading >>

Sometimes, when I find an event that I am really interested in, I get very excited and my heart starts to beat faster. I then have an unbeatable determination to get the tickets ASAP, convinced in my head that everyone else would want them too! Dining with Alice is one of them!

Admittedly, I don’t’ know all details about this event. But as it combines my 2 passions, eating and art, I know it cannot go that wrong. It is going to be a theatrical Victorian Banquet with the White Rabbit, the Mad Hatter and Alice (from May 12- 21 May 2011).  It is organised by Artichoke, of whom I am a great fan. I still remembered the magic they created a few years back in the streets of London with the gigantic robotic puppet elephant and the little girl (the Sultan’s Elephant) in 2006. The public went wild. Continue reading >>

This Italian exercise bike by Ciclotte is not one that just sits in the room and remains unnoticed. On the contrary, it is designed to be looked at! And this was exactly what I did when I first walked past it- I stopped and stared. What a curious object! It is a simple ring with 2 bunny ears (handle bars), saddle, pedals and 2 bunny feet (stablisers). It looks like it is going to hop around in any second.

How is it as an exercise bike? Continue reading >>

What a delightful way to spend a Sunday afternoon in Hyde Park- a bit of a walk, a bit of art and a bit of a treasure hunt!

Equipped with our free guide from the Serpertine Gallery, it did not take long before we spotted our first treasure from a distance.

It was the Sky Mirror 2006! It looked beautifully surreal but it also seemed ‘natural’. I could not stop imagining a bird accidentally flying into it!

Continue reading more about Anish Kapoor >>

DSC06223

I went to this exhibition at Selfridges’s Ultralounge to see the gilded erotic door knobs, which Kay Saatchi (one of the curators) said she loves. To be honest, I was quite disappointed. I could not tell how it could ever be used as a door knob- it was just a door decoration. (I sometimes find it hard to ‘switch off’ my practical head when I look at art) I am delighted, however,  to see that the quality of this gilding work is similar to that of mine, which left me dreaming that my gilded peach is actually of exhibition quality.

One lovely find in the exhibition was ‘Aletheia’ by Darren Harvey-Regan. (see photo above) I felt like I was invisible (as I had no reflection), spying on a bird looking into a mirror in a lightly lit room. Despite this, the bird’s eyes reminded me of Mona Lisa’s. They seemed to be able to tracking me down, wherever I moved around! Very clever!


Another interesting piece was the installation by Gavin Webber (photo above). When I walked through the space generated by the super thin mesh, the space changed according to my body movement- defining the space. Basic mechanics + careful choice of material. No fancy electronic sensors. It is simple and subtle. Fantastic!