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Past Exhibition


Everyday Practice at 20

Chan Sai-lok 

28 May - 21 June 2020

Opening 6 June, 5-8pm

Artist Sharing 13 June, 3-5pm


Everyday Practice at 20

Chan Sai-lok Solo Exhibition


28 May - 21 June 2020

Opening: Saturday 6 June, 5-8pm

Artist in conversation with Ivy Ma: Saturday 13 June, 3-5pm (in Cantonese)

Hours: Thu & Fri, 4-8pm; Sat & Sun, 1-7pm

Hidden Space is delighted to present Chan Sai-lok’s solo exhibition Everyday Practice at 20, the culmination of a series of experiments and exhibitions that began in 2018 and have continued evolving across time and spaces between New York, Hong Kong, Denmark and back home in Hong Kong again.

Chan began his “red” series during a 2018 residency in New York. Experiencing a culture and history so remote from his own, he used the residency as an opportunity to unlearn his artistic ideology and creative trajectory; to explore states of flux and connection where nobody knows where the changes will take us. As Chan explored the relationships between painting, text, words, and identity, works have emerged that fuse colour, culturally specific materials, found objects from Hong Kong and the US, and intertwined texts in English and Cantonese. His text – fragmented, layered, overlapping, printed, painted, cut from acrylic sheet - range from his own poetry, lines from the American Declaration of Independence (taken from the information package given to new immigrants by the US government), to seminal Cantonese song lyrics and graffiti.

What initially appear to be ‘straightforward’ paintings, on closer inspection are translucent coloured silk layered over painted rice paper, flags, over 3D acrylic Chinese characters taken apart into individual phonemes, the silk itself printed with digital photographs taken on the streets. With their unique materiality and cultural significance, exercise books, silk, flags, rice paper, and joss paper have become painting material for Chan, while the exhibition site itself has become a key locale of painting.

In 2019, as Hong Kong was hit by unprecedented turmoil, as more and more graffiti appeared in the streets, erased, re-written, painted over, Chan’s work had already mirrored it and grew to incorporate it. In his notes he writes, “The history of a place moves forwards slowly as it sinks and floats during the process of writing and being erased. The true face of history is formed during the resonance of struggle and contradiction.” Chan contemplates his own and his city’s linked identities. In questioning how he should act, and his future during artistic creation, it has become increasingly important to him to persevere in his way of life through daily art practice as a means to engage with constantly changing environments.

This exhibition marks the finale of the “red” series… and the beginning of a new stage.


As an artist, art critic, and writer based in Hong Kong, CHAN Sai-lok (HK) glides across fields of art and literary practice, education, art criticism and gender studies. Chan holds a BA and MFA in Fine Art and an MA in Gender Studies, all from the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Chan is a winner of the UOB Art in Ink Award, and has been a finalist in the Sovereign Asian Art Prize. His solo exhibitions include Everyday Practice (Flux Factory, NYC, 2019), Land of Longing and Exile (Experimental Gallery, HK Art Centre, 2019), Alongside Poetry in an Alley (Shop A3, curated by Yang Yeung, 2016-17), and Somewhere (Goethe-Institut, 2016). Seven Reds Towards Light was a recent poem installation (ARoS Art Museum, Aarhus, Denmark, 2019). His exhibition catalogue The Countenance of Text was published last year. Chan was one of the editors of Qiuying poetry magazine, an executive committee member of The House of Hong Kong Literature, and is a co-founder of Art Appraisal Club.

This exhibition is supported by the Hong Kong Arts Development Council.

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