傘 : My Revolution Journal
HK-based visual artist and photographer
April 10 to May 22, 2015
傘 (umbrella in English) has become a symbol of Hong Kong’s political protests during September 26 to December 15, 2014 — a civil and non-violent political resistance against the proposed reforms to the Hong Kong electoral system. The image of protesters holding up umbrellas, fighting off a cloud of toxic tear gas, has galvanized over one hundred thousand people to take part in this Umbrella Movement. It is one of the largest peaceful movements in recent world history. Evidently, it is also a young people’s movement. They constituted the majority of the protesters.
傘: My Revolution Journal presents a series of 18 photographs by an emerging artist-photographer in Hong Kong, Kevin Cheng. His work captures the making of this new “umbrella generation,” a young generation whose new pride of political solidarity and identity has emerged from their leading role and active participation in such a large-scale movement. Compellingly, his photographic images reflect on this historical movement not only as an account of a collective political experience, but also a distinctively personal and transformative one. A strong sense of cultural and political identity of young “Hong Kongers” is passionately constructed, represented, and articulated. It’s an identity cultivated on civility, non-aggression, and peace. It distinguishes itself from the perceived crudeness and incivility of the mainlanders in China, and from the more aggressive and combative manner which we’ve normally seen in most large-scale political protests in France or the US.
Kevin Cheng graduated from Hong Kong Polytechnic University in 2010, majoring in Multimedia Design. In 2011, he won the champion of “The 8th Hong Kong Abilympics” Creative Photography (Outdoor) Competition, and subsequently represented Hong Kong in “The 8th International Abilympics” Creative Photography (Outdoor) Competition held in Korea and received a special prize. In 2014, his work entitled Happy Dreamland won the Gold Award in “Cross all Borders: Hong Kong Festival Showcasing New Visual Artists with Disabilities.”