Memento (Hong Kong) 2011

Deborah Hosking
Gestures 15: March 25 – August 7, 2011
projected digitized Super 8 footage, paper lantern

Curated by Katherine Talcott


Curated by Katherine Talcott

Artist Statement

Asia is rife with spirits. The evil ones are of course the best known but ancestors, too, are ubiquitous and must be respected. Country to country, no one doubts this; the only point of departure is how best to handle them. They have operas; they serve them tea, oranges and rice; they burn incense to discourage them and paper money to keep them comfortable in the afterlife. I lived in the village of Yung Shue Wan, on an outlying island of Hong Kong, for the better part of 8 years. There were no cars on the island but there were tiny fishing boats in the harbor. My apartment was urban, in its way, above a noodle shop on the noisy, narrow, concrete Main Street. Less a street than a glorified sidewalk, the pageant of life that passed below my balconies rivaled any city There is no big picture, no single story of Hong Kong in the years before the Handover. Local movies about the city were often shot via mirrors and through windows, close up yet distant. Stories are often vague, not quite coherent – change was too fast for sharp focus or linear plotlines. We’re left with just an impression. I return to Hong Kong and Yung Shue Wan nearly every night in my dreams. Memories fade but the impressions are vivid and insistent. Memento is, as its name suggests, a faded souvenir of a colorful time, part fevered dream, part wistful memory.

About the Artist

Deborah Hosking has lived, worked and exhibited in New York, Hong Kong, Paris, Los Angeles and Pittsburgh. Initially a painter and mixed media artist, she now works primarily in digital photography and video. She has awards to her credit in each medium, and a number of her photographs are currently included in an exhibition in the American Embassy in Prague, Czech Republic. Deborah served as production designer for the short films The Specials and Lightweight, which she also co-wrote. She holds a BFA from Carnegie Mellon University and a MFA in Film and Digital Media from Chatham University.