For the first time in Asia and for a strictly limited season, the Consulate General of Italy in Hong Kong and the Asia Society Hong Kong Centre, with the generous support from The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust, are proud to present Light and Shadows — Caravaggio • The Italian Baroque Master. The exhibition will be held from March 12 to April 13, 2014.
This is an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see one of the most famous paintings in the world, by one of the greatest and pioneering artists. The exhibition also brings Hong Kong audiences up-close with one of Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio's most important works, Supper at Emmaus.
A haunting Baroque masterpiece, Supper at Emmaus (1605-06) was painted during a dark period in the artist's life when he was exiled after committing an act of manslaughter. It depicts Jesus Christ revealing himself to his disciples following his resurrection, in the town of Emmaus. It is a portrait of a flawed humanity, vulnerable to sin and expresses the artist's desire for salvation offered by faith in Christ.
Also on display are contemporary works by four Hong Kong artists — Chow Chun-fai, So Hing-keung, Tsang Kin-wah, and Wucius Wong — which showcase how techniques found in Caravaggio's paintings were adopted centuries later. The exhibition is curated by Professor Frank Vigneron of the Department of Fine Arts, the Chinese University of Hong Kong.
Organized around the themes of "shadows," "theatricality," "mystery," and "realism," this exhibition illustrates different characteristics of Caravaggio's style, which were so influential that they shaped the painting practices of many later European artists.
"Shadows" emphasize aesthetic choices rooted in the European liturgical tradition of its time; Tsang Kin-wah's projection of moving texts both relates to darkness as a setting and illustrates its ideological content.
"Theatricality" not only relates to the use of strong contrasts between light and darkness but also to the choice of powerful and simple gestures to accentuate the action of the painting; the photographic montages of Chow Chun-fai are a very personal take on this dramatic style.
"Mystery" represents the sense of spirituality emanating from Caravaggio's paintings; Wucius Wong's paintings exemplify a philosophical choice rooted in a concept borrowed from Taoist philosophy that can be compared to the darkness of Christian cosmology.
"Realism" is a characteristic of Caravaggio's painting that has had a profound influence on the whole of European art; the photographic portraits of So Hing-keung are reminiscent of Caravaggio's interest in using the disenfranchised as models for his historical and religious figures.
Through the interaction of Caravaggio's famous painting with works by four Hong Kong artists, each representing an aspect of contemporary art practices, audiences can experience a contemporary perspective on the art of one of the greatest and most influential artists of all time.
A 6-month of Italian art and cultural educational program, made possible by The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust’s donation, has also been organized as an extension of the exhibition to arouse the public interests on Caravaggio’s works and Italian arts.
The exhibition is made possible with the support of the Consulate General of Italy in Hong Kong and Macao and the Italian Cultural Institute in Hong Kong in collaboration with the Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities and Tourism and Pinacoteca di Brera in Milan.
About the Docent Tour for HKAAA Members
An exclusive docent-led exhibition tour is now available for HKAAA’s members:
Date: 31 March 2014 (Mon)
Tour Time: 7pm( Approx. 40mins)
Meeting time and point: 6:50pm at main reception of Asia Society
Exhibition Venue: Asia Society Gallery (Former Magazine A) - 9 Justice Drive, Admiralty, Hong Kong
1. Particpants must be current members of HKAAA. Each member is welcome to bring along a guest.
2. Please fill in the name and contact email information of your guest on the registration form.
3. Only limited quota available. Registration will be processed on a first-come-first-served basis.
To join the tour, please register
Enquiries: Hong Kong Arts Administrators Association｜Tel: (852) 2877 7268｜Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio
Supper at Emmaus, 1605-1606
Oil on canvas
H141 x W175 cm
Collection of Pinacoteca di Brera, Milan
Photo courtesy of Pinacoteca di Brera, Milan