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The Call of a Fallen Leaf: A Solo Exhibition by Wenda Yiu

Exhibition Period
Nov 04 - Dec 23, 2022
Exhibition date and time
Fri to Fri, -
Exhibition Place

The Call of a Fallen Leaf: A Solo Exhibition by Wenda Yiu
Curated by Chloe Chow

> Date:4.11.2022 – 23.12.2022
> Time:12pm – 7pm (Tue to Sun)
> Place:WMA Space
> Registration:https://bit.ly/3SNkF8Y

We often use the term ‘rooted’ to describe one’s gaining of a foothold in a place, and ‘uprooted’ as one’s parting with it. Roots have therefore become a living metaphor of how human beings connect with places. If we are to trace the entrenched roots and fallen leaves on islands, are we then able to grasp the stories of the islands’ past and present?

As a sequel to the group exhibition ‘Island(ed) that reflected upon the isolated nature of islands, ‘The Call of a Fallen Leaf, a new solo exhibition by Wenda Yiu, further investigates 19 islands that have disappeared as a result of urban development. These include Kellett Island, Lam Chau and Tit Cham Chau. Yiu has noticed that more and more islands have been flattened or linked to the mainland due to reclamation. As an attempt to preserve and interrogate the traces of existence of these disappeared islands, Yiu visited the artificially reclaimed lands and collected fallen leaves that constituted her new work, Memorandum of the Secret Islands. Yiu has also continued to expand her photography series, This Close, That Far, which was shortlisted for the 2019 WMA Open Photo Contest. In this series, Yiu took photographs at the sites that constituted the former boundaries of the island and the mainland, and juxtaposed them in a rigid manner to highlight the tension between island ecology and urbanisation. The entrenched roots and fallen leaves on islands are also transformed into contours in different paintings. Through the alternate use of hard and soft lines, Yiu reconstructs the maps’ coastlines that are at once abstract and material, archaeological and fictional, disappearing but reappearing at the same time,  as a way to outline the islands’ coastal changes over the past decades.

The exhibition also consolidates a series of archival materials that Yiu has referenced in her research. These materials include the native plants that she gathered as well as the historical photographs and articles that she collected from multiple institutional archives. As very limited records exist for some of these featured islands, we invite the public to join us in constructing an archival database for these islands. Each of these findings will help to further develop Yiu’s work, and in turn evoke our memory and imagination of these unnamed islands.

Let us seek our roots with fallen leaves, as they return to where it all began.

About the artist

Wenda Yiu Tung Wing (b.1992, Hong Kong)

Yiu graduated from the RMIT University with a BA degree in Fine Art (co-presented with Hong Kong Art School), majoring in painting. Her practice derives from her interest in nature and its relationship with humanity and culture. In recent years, she traces the disappearance of islands in Hong Kong with imaginations and research into archives and folklore, and explored them through mediums including old maps, ink painting, photography and collage. Her artworks were shown in a number of joint exhibitions in Hong Kong, including Art Basel (2022, 2021) and Fine Art Asia (2020), and were collected by private collectors. Yiu held her first solo exhibition ‘Mapping Local’ in 2020. She received the ‘Outstanding Artwork (Painting)’ prize at Hong Kong Art School (2017), the finalist award in ‘WMA Open Photo Contest’ (2019) and the C&G Artpartment Award (2020).


4/11 (Fri)