Based in Hong Kong for the first leg of his trip, the research is part of Carlin’s Clore Leadership fellowship, which is supported by a-n. Carlin will also visit Bangalore and Kochi in India.
Hosted in Hong Kong by residency and collaboration space Spring Workshop, Carlin’s research so far has included a studio visit to meet a group of artists who upcycle waste packaging and a meeting with Suhanya Raffel, director of M+, a new museum of Asian visual culture and art which is due to open in 2019.
He has also attended previews and exhibitions at artist-led and commercial spaces, and presented a lecture about his work at Asia Art Archive,
Speaking about Spring Workshop, Carlin said: “Rather than developing a residency model that simply provides work space, founder Mimi Brown has created a dynamic and welcoming environment where residents become part of the both the workshop and the extended Hong Kong arts community, even before they arrive.
“Brown talks passionately about the workshop, and her ethos is similar to that of Islington Mill, the residency space I founded in Salford.
“Good residency experiences are about so much more than space provision. Having key people on the ground who are willing to give their time and share their knowledge can make all the difference.”
Following a visit to M+, a contemporary art, design, architecture and performance museum which is currently in development as part of the West Kowloon cultural quarter, Carlin noted that many major arts institutions in Hong Kong are led by women.
“At M+, Suhanya Raffel explained that she doesn’t consider a museum to be a building, instead it’s a relationship between ideas, things and viewers.
“Building global partnerships with other museums is a key focus for her. She tells us how important she believes it is in the current political climate where free movement is being restricted to restate that art is a global as well as a local community.”
At artist-led space Para Site, which was set up in the period preceding Hong Kong’s handover by the UK government to China and has since evolved into an international contemporary art centre, Carlin visited current exhibition, ‘Creative Operational Solutions’, featuring work created by artists-in-residence on board commercial cargo ships.
“Ferenc Gróf’s Flags of Convenience includes imagery photographed by the artist whilst on board the cargo ship, while his customised typographic wallpaper, Harmonised System, is based on a 1980s coding system for all traded products.”
And at Gallery Exit, a space that exhibits mainly conceptually-driven work by Hong Kong artists, Carlin attended the preview of artist collective Wong Ka Ying and Mak Ying Tung’s project, ‘Come Inside: Baby Shower’.
“The artists formed Come Inside as a saucy take on female stereotypes in global pop culture.
“Having previously performed as a pseudo girl group at various venues in Hong Kong, adopting the hyper-girlish dressing style and choreographed cuteisms of ‘idol’ groups, for this new exhibition they have created collage-style works that deal with a preference for ‘cute’ and ‘fragile’ women in global merchandising and e-commerce.”
For the second leg of his research Carlin will visit Bangalore, before moving on to Kochi on India’s south west coast for his final stop over. Follow his progress on a-n’s Instagram
The Clore Leadership Pogramme is aimed at helping to develop leadership skills within all areas of the arts. Supported by a-n, Carlin is the inaugural Clore Visual Artist Fellow 2016/17.
1, 6. The opening of Come Inside: Baby Shower, an exhibition by Hong Kong artist collective Mak Ying Tung and Ky Wong at Gallery Exit. Photo: Maurice Carlin
2. Jerrel Jackson, Victoria Amedume and Maurice Carlin visiting the studio of Jik Jik Team artists who upcycle waste packaging in ‘communal production’ with communities.
3. Spring Workshop with work by William Kentridge. Photo: Maurice Carlin
4. Maurice Carlin, Victoria Amedume and Susanna Chung meeting Suhanya Raffel, director of M+.
5. Ferenc Gróf, Harmonised System and Flags of Convenience. Photo: Maurice Carlin