Interview #86

Book Corner: “On-Line” by Danny Liu & Alex Lai


Written and Images by 字字研究所
Translation by Wendy Yiu

A book is like a friend. We understand the world and life, or even observe ourselves through texts, and have a deep realization of oneself that we are not alone. PMQ invites different people from design and culture sectors to recommend a book, so that you can enrich yourselves as book therapy.

Why would you recommend this book?

Depicted by ink artist Danny LIU Wing Hung, On-Line showcases his latest series of 25 artworks created since the Pandemic, as well as a narrative relating to a group of anonymous birds taking their inter-temporal flight to Hong Kong from Song Dynasty (960- 1279). They carry a set of cultured aesthetics, reflect the line(s) between Liu’s dream, the connection and distancing under the pandemic, Mother Nature and civilisation, altogether interweaves the artistry Liu creates while nurturing not only others but also his connecting flight, reflecting the modern oddities that invite readers to explore the oxymoron of heritage and human conditions.

Like a thread of silk, On-Line links up many elements into a complex narrative, expanding Danny’s investigative journey in ink painting for the past 20 years. Since the second half of 2020, his exploration continued through the medium of fine silk, a prestigious material throughout history and across cultures. The resulting artworks appear with an additional quality of delicacy. Viewers will first be struck by the motifs of birds and vivid palette – blue represents the sky, ochre symbolises the earth, green embodies human. These elements are interwoven to illustrate Liu’s dreamscapes: a transtemporal vision on the relationship between nature and contemporary society. Another outstanding theme in the series is a reflection on development and civilisation, as a once-in-a-century pandemic exposes how easily they can be destabilised. Underscored by Liu’s signature “less is more” aesthetic, the series contemplates the elusive line that separates different segments of the city. This collection of 25 works not only invites visual appreciation, but also an intellectual and psychological engagement.


Author: Danny Liu, Alex Lai


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