Graduate Showcase from Academy of Visual Arts, HKBU (II)

Lee Pui Ying - Halt in the Word

This issue presents Kate Wong On-kei, a talented artist whose passion is to explore stories and metaphors by visualising words typographically. She says letters and characters are her tools to communicate with people and the world. And there is Shadow Lee Pui-ying, another highly skilled creator who is avid about book design and conveying emotion through her work as she says art is about expression.

Is there any meaning behind the pairing up of vocabulary on each canvas?

Wong On Kei - Moving From Being Blind to See

Wong On Kei – Moving From Being Blind to See

Kate:

They are very similar visually, but totally different in meaning. Viewers can read the positive word with the negative word together. I used the pairs of words to create patterns. The audience can see it in my book when they move to the end of the canvas.

Shadow:

Maybe that is just the style of my works. I don’t like or I can’t do something which is too loud. If the layout looks too loud, I will do that again and adjust it to be quiet. That is my style and also my personality.

What have you discovered during the project?

Kate:

I found that I like using a minimum amount of words to present an idea and explore typography with different materials.

Lee Pui Ying - Halt in the Word

Lee Pui Ying – Halt in the Word

Shadow:

I think rules. According to rules I can unify my layouts. Sometimes I will remember the pictures or the natural view that I saw and make them to be the layout which is suitable to the meanings of my poems.

What is the message that you want to convey to the world?

Kate:

Don’t just look at one side, and don’t be afraid of making mistakes. Sometimes, you just need to change your thought a little bit, then everything could be changed – like the words “dark and spark.”
Everything in our life can create beautiful patterns no matter whether they are positive or negative.

What was the most difficult part of your project?

Kate:

To think about the story, to connect and to visualise my message.

Shadow:

The most difficult part was the setting of my book because I wanted to find some suitable furniture for my book and add some chairs for people sitting and reading. However I didn’t have enough time to do it so the exhibition was just like that.

Wong On Kei - Moving From Being Blind to See

Wong On Kei – Moving From Being Blind to See

What is the best way you would recommend an audience to view your work?

Kate:

My work has two parts: one is the words on canvas and the other part is the book. I hope the audience could see the simple words first and then the patterns in my book. It is about exploration, to move, to read.

Shadow:

I would recommend them to see the layouts and see the words as images because then it would be easy to understand the atmospheres and feelings of my poems. After that, they can read my poems and find the connection to the layouts.

 

 About the awardees…

What have you personally discovered about yourself from working on your project?

Wong On Kei - Moving From Being Blind to See

Wong On Kei – Moving From Being Blind to See

Kate:

I realised that one part of me is quite optimistic and eager to share a positive message. I enjoy a lot of the comparison part: to find the difference and similarity of words.

Shadow:

I found out that I loved doing layouts. In this project, I liked doing the layout more than the other parts of my book because I would like to make everything look better and play with the readability.

How has art affected you?

Kate:

I was bullied in secondary school, but art is like my best friend. It gives me courage to express my feelings such as sadness. I found relief and I found myself in making art. I want to share my experience and positive messages through art.

Shadow:

When I am doing design, I would like to add some emotion into it. Art is something about expressing emotion. I put some emotion into my book; it’s a part of design and a part of art.

Lee Pui Ying - Halt in the Word

Lee Pui Ying – Halt in the Word

What is your next project?

Kate:

I am not so sure now, but I will develop my project with typography.

Shadow:

Actually, this project isn’t finished yet because I’m still finding a publisher to publish this book. Maybe my next project will also be some books about my writing.

What is your ultimate goal as a creator?

Kate:

I want to deliver the beautiful, spirited message to people. I hope people can appreciate the message rather than read the information.

Shadow:

My ultimate goal is to affect others through reading. Readers are just like a sponge, they absorb many things during the process. But nowadays, people don’t read as much and are often too tired to read. So I want to do something to affect people and help them read more and more by using my knowledge of typography.

 

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