Kirk Cheng - The Floral Artisan

The End Result "Circle of Life"

*Speacial thanks goes out to Stephen So and Cora Mao for loaning us your Go Pros so we could shoot this video, and thanks to Nero Ip for his support and video editing skills.

SOLO EXHIBITION

Above Second Gallery is proud to present: 
“CIRCLE OF LIFE - 花‧藝不息”
a floral exhibition featuring 花藝師 art florist 鄭蘶 KIRK CHENG (HK)
 
Public Opening Date: 4th July, 2015, Time: 6pm – 10pm

Exhibition will run through until the end of August
Venue: 9 FIRST St, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong
Contact: info@above-second.com


它是我們的人生中的配角,它出現在小生命的誕生、畢業典禮、婚禮、人生中成功的時刻;它在我們混沌時會帶來平靜,在我們失意時會帶來安慰。然而,我們卻甚少會花時間去欣賞這生命的奇蹟與成長,它是「花」。花,是大自然賜予人們的禮物,它能熬過無數艱難的冬季,每到春季時再次茁壯地成長。花,在當代文化有舉足輕重的象徵。單是一支玫瑰,不同的花瓣顏色可代表不同的訊息,可以是傳遞愛意,又可以是表達哀悼。

花藝師Kirk Cheng在Above Second舉行首次個人展覽,展示了人生中每一個階段的花束的重要性,細看花的生命週期:由花苞到綻開到花謝 。Kirk Cheng說:「我���歡留意一些生活中客易被人忽略的事物,或多數都被視作裝飾品的事物,然後將它變成大眾的焦點,去改變大眾對它的印象。」Kirk續說:「我的作品本身就是生命,就如人生一樣走過不同的階段:花會長芽苞、開花、綻放,最後慢慢枯萎。我認為這是生命最美麗的東西,所以我以自然作為創作媒體。」展覽主題是「花‧藝不息」,Kirk創作一系列場地特定的藝術裝置,表達生命的循環不息,包括生和死。

展覽使用時令鮮花,製作出三幅垂直的花牆:翠绿花含苞待放代表生命伊始;深紅色的鮮花代表熱情與年青;純白的花代表死亡。在畫廊中心是全個展覽的亮點:一個浮起的雕塑,上面是全被噴上黑色。

展覽設有一段投影片段,將雕塑的製作過程以快鏡重現眼前,片段中展示藝術家的手工藝之餘,更展示出雕塑被塗上黑色之前的莖部、花瓣和葉片的成長過程。Kirk說:「在花謝到乾的過程都是一種美,這其實是一件很浪漫的事。」

由於使用新鮮的花朵,Kirk和他的團隊深明在製作過程中花的生長形態是不可預測,就如大自然的無常。每一朵鮮花都形態獨特,有其特色, Kirk不但只是創作者,更是展覽空間內生命循環的催化劑。Kirk想要創作一個觀眾可以體驗的空間,種下「記憶中一件永不磨滅的無形物件。」Kirk希望觀眾從繽紛的色彩、柔柔的植物和平靜的空間中,喚醒平日刻板的生活,延緩老化的過程,在忙碌的生活中停一停,欣賞大自然的美,更希望觀眾在展覽帶走的不只是鮮花的香氣,而是對自我重新認識。
 
 
They play supporting roles in our lives, celebrating births, graduations, weddings and successes, calming us when chaos occurs or when words fail us, yet we rarely take a moment to appreciate the sheer miracle of life and growth that are flowers. Nature’s gift to the world is the abundance of these plants, which are capable of surviving even the harshest winters to rise up again every year in Springtime. Flowers are also powerful symbols in our contemporary culture. One single rose can convey a message of either love or mourning depending on the colour of its petals. 

For his very first solo show at Above Second, celebrated floral artist Kirk Cheng wishes to acknowledge the importance of bouquets in every stage of our lives but at the same time empowering the life cycle of flowers, from bud to bloom and beyond. "I like the idea of taking something that is generally overlooked in today’s society or merely regarded as a decoration and spotlighting it for the public, thus changing our perspective on them,” says Cheng. “My artwork is born of life itself, and like life it goes through stages: a flower will bud, bloom and flourish than eventually droop and decay. I regard life as the most beautiful thing there is, and I use nature as my medium to portray this." Taking the simple title ‘Circle of Life’, Cheng creates a site-specific, immersive installation that references the ever-looping stages of birth, life and death. 

Using flowers in season, Cheng forms a narrative through three vertical wall gardens: a circular bed of green spring buds to signify the beginning of life, rich crimson flowers for passion and youth, and pure white flowers and twig for death. In the centre of the gallery sits the ‘centrepiece’, a floating heart-shaped sculpture of roses completely spray-painted black. Accompanying the show is a projected timelapse video of this sculpture’s creation, showing not only Cheng’s architectural crafting of it but also the organic transformation of the stems, petals and leaves before it is painted black. Cheng says: “The process as it dies and dries up is actually how we understand beauty; there is a kind of romance in it.” 

As live elements are used in this show, Cheng and his team expect unpredictable changes in the evolution and the shaping of the pieces, much like the impermanence of nature itself. Each flower is unique in its formation and role in the exhibition, making Cheng not simply the creator but also the catalyst for the circle of life within the space. Kirk wishes to create a space for people to experience and plant “an everlasting moment in their memory of this intangible matter.” Kirk hopes that visitors to the gallery will have their senses awakened; the vibrant colors and soft flora will wake their minds from its dreary slumber of everyday life, and slow the aging process down as they pause from their busy lives to appreciate the beauty of nature, leaving the gallery not just with the lingering scent of flowers but with a renewed sense of self. Kirk wishes to create a space for people to experience and plant “an everlasting moment in their memory of this intangible matter.”