the elusive


Siu Wai Hang, has re-discovered the retro charms of the “animation book” format. In his work The Elusive, he places all the photos he shot from the railing outside Hong Kong's military barracks in a specially designed machine, so that the photos are constantly turning, simulating an animation book effect. This

forms a mobile, broken set of fuzzy images. The undefined and hesitative outcome is exactly what the artist wants to convey about his visual and mental state.

His other set of works uses slit-scan photography to convert video into a series of Hong Kong street photographs. As an old photographic method, slit-scan photography was first used to decide horse race winners. Ordinary photography usually presents a still point of time, but the frames produced by slit-scanning photography can capture long thin images, and countless strips arranged on the screen reflect changes of time. Siu Wai Hang shoots the Hong Kong streets in this way, and in the process of shooting, the viewer / camera point of view is fixed, and the viewer / object relative to the camera is subject to constant movement and transformation. In the final presentation of the work, the relationship is turned over, the subject solidi ed in the picture, and the viewer will need to constantly move to complete their view of it, thus time is converted into space. We may say that these scrolls are Hong Kong's version of By the River during Qingming, but in truth, that kind of classical clarity and certainty has long gone. As subjects move in front of the lens at different speeds, they are compressed, elongated, deformed, almost unrecognizable, they hurry, but where to is unknown. Just as the late 19th century impressionist painters were no longer satisfied with classical painting styles of the academy, these artists feel the need to use new techniques to express the rapid industrialization and urbanization processes of modern life. In Hong Kong in 2017, the documentary photography of Siu Wai Hang is a search for the most appropriate way to show his feelings about the social and psychological scenes in front of him.

Tang Zehui